The Aston Martin Formula 1 team has announced that Stoffel Vandoorne has joined it as a reserve driver for the 2023 season.
The Belgian will share duties alongside reigning Formula 2 champion Felipe Drugovich, who signed to the team earlier this year.
It also appears that Nico Hulkenberg has been relieved of his duties with the team, amid reports that the German driver will return to F1 with Haas in 2023.
Vandoorne, who has won titles in GP2 and Formula E during his successful racing career, will also undergo an intensive simulation and development programme at Aston Martin’s Silverstone factory.
“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 Aramco Cognizant Formula 1 Team,” Vandoorne said.
“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 [Alonso], 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.”
Vandoorne raced two seasons in F1 in 2017 and 2018 with McLaren, before departing the series and joining Formula E.
The 30-year-old will compete in the upcoming season of Formula E with DS Penske after Mercedes opted to leave the all-electric championship at the end of Season 8.
“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,” said Aston Martin team boss Mike Krack.
“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.”
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