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McLaren would not let Vandoorne go to Renault

  • Published on 08 Feb 2016 14:45
  • comments 3
  • By: Rob Veenstra

Renault reportedly tried and failed to secure the services of Stoffel Vandoorne for 2016. The French marque's new team boss Frederic Vasseur ran the Belgian driver in his GP2 team ART last year, where he utterly dominated en route to the title.

But Vandoorne is tightly under contract to McLaren. "With Stoffel, the situation is very clear," Vasseur said last week. "He is under contract to McLaren and I really think he will go there next year. McLaren is aware of his results and his ability, so I cannot imagine for a split second that they will let him go," he added.

Indeed, Vasseur has now been quoted by the Belgian newspaper La Derniere Heure as confirming that he tried to sign up Vandoorne for 2016, before settling instead for the ousted former McLaren racer Kevin Magnussen. "We had to forget the idea with Stoffel," he said. "He has a contract there and they do not want to let him go. We needed a driver who was available and therefore we decided on Magnussen," Vasseur added.

He said he is happy with Renault's 2016 lineup, even though the marque inherited the plans made by the former Lotus team's chiefs. "We are taking part of a pre-existing situation," Vasseur told the French daily L'Equipe.

"I chose one (Magnussen), but the other (Jolyon Palmer) is looking very good. Oddly, I have raced neither in the lower categories, but I do not mind not having an ART driver for Renault. With the third driver Esteban (Ocon)," he added, "it's different. I have always believed in him. He is coming to Renault (on loan) from Mercedes." (GMM)

Replies (3)

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  • I can imagine McLaren wouldnt like to let go of another talent. In any case, it sounds like at least one McLaren driver will leave before the 2017 season, so they probably want to have Vandoorne replace the departing driver. In any case, Im pretty sure its better for Renault to pick Magnussen: he's actually raced in F1 before, and know how to develope a car. He'll definitely be a good compliment to rookie Palmer.

    • + 0
    • Feb 8 2016 - 15:59
  • khasmir

    Posts: 893

    If it's true Renault really tried to get Stoffel on board, that says a lot about how highly they think of him. TBH, so do I, pretty sure he could make Verstappen eat his dust ;)
    I just hope McLaren don't kill Stoffel his career like they nearly did with Magnussen.

    • + 0
    • Feb 8 2016 - 18:31
  • Mammi78

    Posts: 5

    As a dane im pleased to see K-Mag get the seat. He realy needed and deserved it! Stoffel is for sure the hottest name of the two due to hvis 2015 season, where K-Mag was sidelined. K-mag did beat Stoffel in 2013 and was choosen over him by McLaren. I Think it's pretty close between those two. I know Jolyon Palmer is the 2014 GP2 champ, but i don't realy rate him as high. K-Mag will hopefully overshine Palmer on both pace and points in 2016. I don't think both of Them Will be there in 2017.

    • + 0
    • Feb 8 2016 - 19:46

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