Vandoorne to join Aston Martin as test and reserve driver for 2023 season
Aston Martin have announced that reigning Formula E champion Stoffel Vandoorne will be joining the team as a test and reserve driver for the 2023 season.
Aston Martin revealed that he will share duties with F2 champion Felipe Drugovich – who joined the team’s driver development programme back in September – with Aston Martin saying that Vandoorne will “undertake an intensive simulation and development programme at the team's Silverstone factory”.
Vandoorne is a former GP2 winner and has made 41 Grand Prix starts – all for McLaren from 2016 to 2018. The Belgian has also been the reserve driver for Mercedes since 2019, while also racing in Formula E – where he won the championship earlier this year.
"It is incredibly exciting to be stepping into a reserve-driver role in Formula 1 – and I'm delighted to be doing it with Aston Martin,” said Vandoorne
"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.
"Joining Fernando [Alonso], who I already know from my Formula 1 racing career, and Lance [Stroll], to help them develop and improve next year's car will be a terrific job, and I'm really looking forward to the challenge – and reward – of working together with the whole organisation at Silverstone."
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Aston Martin Team Principal Mike Krack added: "Stoffel 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.
"The whole team is hugely motivated for next year, and the appointment of Stoffel, alongside Fernando, Lance and Felipe, gives extra depth to our fantastic driver line-up.
"This will be a significant role for Stoffel, and we will be reliant on him to work hard with both our track and simulation and engineering teams to improve our performance for 2023 and beyond."
Vandoorne will conduct his role with Aston Martin alongside his commitments in Formula E, where he will be racing for the DS Penske team for the 2022/23 season.
It remains to be seen what the implication of Vandoorne’s new role will be for Aston Martin’s current reserve driver Nico Hulkenberg – with the German having been linked with a seat at Haas for the 2023 season.