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Vandoorne's Mercedes-backed move confirmed

Vandoorne's Mercedes-backed move confirmed

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Vandoorne's Mercedes-backed move confirmed

Vandoorne's Mercedes-backed move confirmed

Stoffel Vandoorne has been confirmed as part of HWA's debut line-u in Formula E, the Belgian securing a racing future after being let go by McLaren. Vandoorne will partner newly crowned DTM champion Gary Paffett for the HWA team, who are heavily backed by Mercedes.

HWA ran in DTM for almost 20 years effectively as Mercedes' team, but will switch from the German touring car championship to FE for the all-electric series fifth campaign, which starts in December this year.

Mercedes will join FE for season six – potentially giving Vandoorne a big platform from which to rebuild his career.

"It definitely won't be easy," he said. "My objective is therefore to become competitive in the series as soon as possible and to make a good impression.

"It's great to work alongside such an experienced driver as Gary Paffett.

"I am pretty sure that we will benefit from each other during the season. Although we are all newbies to the series, I have no doubt that we will have a steep learning curve."

Vandoorne stepped up full-time to Formula 1 in 2017 with a superb junior career behind him, including championship wins in GP2 and Super Formula.

However, the Belgian has struggled badly, as McLaren have saddled him with an uncompetitive car, which Fernando Alonso has vastly outperformed him in.

Alonso has outqualified Vandoorne in all 17 races in 2018 and finished a race behind his teammate only once.

MORE: Red Bull chief brutally denies Vandoorne rumours
MORE: Vandoorne shows Norris the pitfalls of F1

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