Vandoorne: "Other options available" if McLaren doesn't pick me

Stoffel Vandoorne is "positive" that he will have an opportunity to become a full-time Formula 1 driver in 2017, even if McLaren doesn't promote him.

Vandoorne: "Other options available" if McLaren doesn't pick me
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-31 Test and Reserve Driver
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren Test and Reserve Driver
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-31 Test and Reserve Driver
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-31 Test and Reserve Driver
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren Test and Reserve Driver
Stoffel Vandoorne, Dandelion Racing
Stoffel Vandoorne, Dandelion Racing
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Reigning GP2 champion Vandoorne, 24, currently serves as McLaren's reserve driver and has already made his grand prix debut, substituting for Fernando Alonso in Bahrain.

It is widely believed that Vandoorne and Alonso's regular teammate Jenson Button are in a head-to-head for the seat alongside the Spaniard in 2017.

Speaking at the Silverstone in-season test, Vandoorne said: "The main goal is to be in Formula 1 next year. That hasn't changed.

"Obviously, I am contracted to McLaren and I really want to be with this team next year, I've spent a lot of time here with the engineers and I feel like we've really been through the perfect preparation.

"There's really not much more I can do, I just need to get the drive."

The Belgian then noted that McLaren was not going to be his only chance of making the grid in 2017.

"I would love to race for this team, but I've always said - if for some reasons, which I don't know, it doesn't become possible, then I'm positive that there are other options available."

Several teams are believed to have shown an interest in Vandoorne, with Renault - helmed by his former team boss at ART, Frederic Vasseur - chief among them.

Super Formula efforts

Alongside his McLaren reserve duties, Vandoorne is also racing in Japanese series Super Formula this season, piloting a Honda-engined chassis.

Asked by Motorsport.com whether Honda were monitoring his progress in that series, Vandoorne said: "I think everybody is interested in what I'm doing there."

He added: "This year I see for me as more of a preparation year for next year, my main focus is still to get a Formula 1 drive next year and I've been focused on my role as reserve driver.

"Having a racing programme besides of that is just a good benefit for me, to stay race fit and sharp."

Additional reporting by Jamie Klein

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