Formula E champion Vandoorne joins Aston Martin as F1 reserve for 2023

2023 F1 season

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Formula E champion Stoffel Vandoorne will join Aston Martin’s F1 team as a test and reserve driver next year.

Vandoorne became Formula E world champion for Mercedes this year before the team left the series, and will defend his title with DS Penske. He will share Aston Martin reserve duties with reigning Formula 2 champion Felipe Drugovich.

The 30-year-old scored a point on his F1 debut in the 2016 Bahrain Grand Prix as a substitute for Fernando Alonso at McLaren. He drove alongside Alonso full-time at the team over the following two season, before being dropped at the end of 2018. Since then he has served as a reserve driver for Mercedes while also competing successfully for the team in FE.

He described his move to the Silverstone-based Aston Martin team as “incredibly exciting”.

“I’ve watched with great interest how the team has developed and expanded operationally, and I know how incredibly determined it is to make progress in every area.”

Vandoorne will be reunited with his former team mate Alonso as he moves into Aston Martin’s race line-up for 2023 alongside Lance Stroll. “Joining Fernando, who I already know from my Formula 1 racing career, and Lance, to help them develop and improve next year’s car will be a terrific job,” said Vandoorne.

Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack believes Vandoorne “has all the capabilities we need for this new and expanded role within the team: he is fast, analytical, hard-working and a fantastic team player, and will fit perfectly into our growing organisation, working alongside our other test driver, Felipe Drugovich”.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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14 comments on “Formula E champion Vandoorne joins Aston Martin as F1 reserve for 2023”

  1. Hmm, what about Nico?

    1. @andycz One rumor tells Nico is going to Haas..

      Well it is better to have two test drivers than one. I guess.

    2. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
      1st November 2022, 17:00

      What about drugovich?

      1. @justarandomdutchguy He will share the 3rd seat with Vandoorne

  2. Drugovich must be thinking: what did I just sign?

    1. It might be best for both of them to not be needed on all 24 weekends as a backup, and thus having the opportunity to race elsewhere. Obviously Vandoorne has a Formula E contract, but this leaves the door open for Drugovich at least for endurance racing or something.

    2. Test or reserve drivers are almost the same but still in difference of importance. But both drivers need their series to keep their racecraft up and that is much beter to do with 2 drivers.

  3. I guess this confirms Nico Hulkenberg to Haas then and Mick Schumacher left on the sidelines.

    Personally I think that’s a shame. Mick has really started to up his game during the second half of this season but the Haas has unfortunately moved backwards leaving him without the results to show for his improvement.

    I personally can’t see that Hulkenberg, who has been without a full-time seat since 2019, will offer a significant step up for Haas over a third-year Mick Schumacher, but it’s easy for me to say anything sitting here in my armchair so all the best to both of them!

    1. @sbewers Let’s wait & see before making definitive conclusions.
      However, I agree that Hulk would unlikely be an improvement over Mick, given he hasn’t done any active racing since the 2019 season ended, while Mick is presently racing in F1.
      More likely a retrograde step, if anything, & probably also only a stop-gap solution.

      1. I perhaps should’ve typer ‘from’ instead of ‘over’

    2. I can’t help thinking Hulkenberg and Magnussen to lead a team that is Haas. Both are 7/10 drivers on most of the races but that’s about it. Yes Nico is very experienced but so is Magnussen

  4. Reserve role in one team, a team switch for the sake of being a reserve, weird.
    Slightly redundant as he’s unlikely to become a full-time F1 driver again.

  5. BLS (@brightlampshade)
    2nd November 2022, 15:04

    Being a third driver at Aston seems a slightly odd choice, how much hope do you put in replacing either Alonso or Stroll. For very different reasons I can’t see either going anywhere for 2-3 years.

  6. I guess Hulk will be in Haas to suck Magnessun’s balls :D (If someone remembers ;) )

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