Stoffel Vandoorne will make the switch to Formula E for the 2018-19 season after signing with new team HWA Racelab.
The Belgian driver was left without a drive in Formula 1 after McLaren announced they were signing Carlos Sainz Jr and Lando Norris for next year.
With no other drives on the F1 grid looking likely Vandoorne chose to make the switch to all-electric racing and completes HWA’s driver line-up after they announced Gary Paffett last week.
Speaking about his new drive the Belgian said, “HWA are such a great team with a long and successful history in motorsport. All the people I’ve met so far are really passionate about racing.
“Also, 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. However, it won’t be easy. My objective is therefore to become competitive in the series as soon as possible and to make a good impression.”
CEO of HWA AG Ulrich Fritz acknowledged that with a new team it was a risk entering the series with two rookie drivers.
However he was confident that with their experience gained from other series, both Paffet and Vandoorne would quickly be able to help develop their car.
“Stoffel has demonstrated his talent and his speed not only in Formula 1, but also in the 2015 GP2 which he won by a wide margin,” Fritz said.
“In Stoffel and Gary, we have two Formula E rookies on our team, which in any case is making its own debut in the electric series. That’s why we all have a lot to learn together.
“However, Gary and are Stoffel outstanding racing drivers who have a wealth of experience gained in Formula 1 and in the DTM.
“In addition, both know how to work in collaboration with the engineers to develop and fine-tune a new racing car. These are precisely the sort of strengths that will count for a lot in our first Formula E campaign.”
With the new Formula E season getting underway in December it will just three weeks between his last race for McLaren in Abu Dhabi and his first race for HWA in Saudi Arabia.