Formula 1

Paul Ricard Will “Provide Some Great Racing” – Stoffel Vandoorne

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Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

As one of few current Formula 1 drivers to have experienced the Circuit Paul Ricard, Stoffel Vandoorne believes it will “provide some great racing” as the sport returns to France after a decade’s absence.

“Although Formula 1 hasn’t visited Paul Ricard for a long time, I’m actually one of the only drivers on the current grid that has driven the track – I drove there during a Pirelli test in 2016, which was a really cool experience, and I also raced there in my Formula Renault days,” says Vandoorne.

“It looks like a great track which has been very much modernised, and I think it’ll provide some great racing. It’s a technical circuit, with a mix of high-speed and low-speed sections, and some of the corners like Signes are extremely challenging and really good fun.

“There are also some areas where overtaking is definitely possible, so hopefully it should help to mix up the pack a little bit. “There will be a lot of fans coming to Paul Ricard to experience this race for the first time, so there should be a great atmosphere all weekend.”

Vandoorne has struggled in recent races; the Belgian hasn’t scored points for the McLaren F1 Team since the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in April. At a new circuit, Vandoorne is keen to see how the team performs.

“It’ll be great to visit a new city and see how our package performs on a new track – it’ll be unknown territory for all of us, but I’m looking forward to the challenge and hope we can put our last couple of results behind us.

Vandoorne was also keen to congratulate his team-mate Fernando Alonso on his Le Mans 24 Hours victory as the pair look ahead for more success on French soil.

“Congratulations to Fernando for his win at Le Mans – I watched the last few hours at home and was hoping nothing dramatic would happen right at the end. I know Fernando did a lot of preparation and it was a well-deserved victory for the whole team.”

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Formula 1 Writer for TheCheckeredFlag. Tried racing once, crashed lots; writing about it is much safer. Follow me on Twitter @CVennF1
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