It is fairly certain that Stoffel Vandoorne has no regrets bidding adieu to Formula One. The Belgian driver has declared that Formula E is the future poster child of motorsport, instead of Formula 1.
Vandoorne and teammate Nyck de Vries kicked off Mercedes‘ FE debut with a bang, courtesy back-to-back podiums in Saudi Arabia. With this, Stoffel Vandoorne is lying in second in the drivers’ standings after two rounds. This is a far cry from what he went through in Formula One with the McLaren team.
During his F1 tenure, the 27-year old was largely outperformed by world champion team-mate Fernando Alonso. However, he claimed that not everything was as it seemed with the Spaniard. According to Vandoorne, McLaren favoured Alonso heavily and the bulk of the upgrades kept flowing in Alonso’s direction.
In fact, he suggested that the Spaniard was better at playing the political game in the paddock. It is because of that reason that a return to the Formula One paddock is no longer lucrative for Vandoorne. He even slammed the paddock atmosphere and on-track product.
“It is a bit of a fake world in which everyone gets along well, but above all has their own interests to defend,” he told Sport/Voetbalmagazine of F1.
“In Formula E, Le Mans or the WEC endurance races you will find pure racing right now. You come here to race, not to do politics. Formula 1 remains the largest championship, Formula E is just below that.”
“It is one of the most competitive championships I have competed in. Many drivers have experience in Formula 1, others have a track record with which they could enter F1. It’s the future. That’s why you see more and more car manufacturers.”
With life at Mercedes FE far more even, Stoffel Vandoorne has seemingly washed his hands off F1.