Vandoorne to drive for McLaren-Honda in Barcelona F1 test

McLaren-Honda has announced that Stoffel Vandoorne will drive the MP4-31 on the second day of next week’s post-Spanish Grand Prix Formula One test.

The Belgian will take over from Jenson Button, who is set to drive on the opening day of in-season testing. Vandoorne has previous experience of this year’s McLaren-Honda package, having received a late call-up to replace the injured Fernando Alonso at the Bahrain Grand Prix last month.

The 2015 GP2 Series champion wasted little time making an impression, as he outqualified Button and went on to finish 10th in the race and secure his maiden championship point.

Vandoorne, who has already been tipped for a full-time role at McLaren in 2017, joins fellow ‘young drivers’ Alex Lynn (Williams), Esteban Ocon (Renault) and Alfonso Celis Jr (Force India) on the Barcelona test line-up.

Current F1 regulations state that teams must field pilots who have not started more than two grands prix in at least two of their allocated four days of in-season testing.

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The first in-season test takes place at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on May 17/18, while the second group session is scheduled for after the British Grand Prix on July 12/13.

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