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Stoffel Vandoorne

Formula E champion Vandoorne assesses chances of F1 return

Stoffel Vandoorne has managed to turn his career around after taking his first World Championship title with Mercedes in Formula E this year.

Formula E World Champion Stoffel Vandoorne says "never say never" to a Formula 1 return, despite success with Mercedes in the all-electric championship.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily Star, Vandoorne believes that establishing himself in Formula E might turn heads in F1, but admits that his focus is mainly on defending his crown next season.

"My future is Formula E. I've done the Formula 1 gig for two years in '17 and '18. I don't feel like I'll be in Formula 1 again.

"But never say never. The world is a strange place.

"Anything is possible but, personally, it's not something I have in the back of my mind. It's not something where I'm thinking, 'I have to get back into a Formula 1 seat'."

Vandoorne believes future is in Formula E

Vandoorne made his F1 debut with McLaren in 2017 during the team's turbulent time with Honda engines. After a string of bad results and engine failures, the squad switched to Renault power units in 2018.

With Fernando Alonso as his teammate, Vandoorne struggled to match him on pace, prompting McLaren to drop him in favour of Lando Norris and hire Carlos Sainz after Alonso went into his first F1 retirement.

Vandoorne went on to compete in the World Endurance Championship and Le Mans, before joining Mercedes in Formula E full-time in 2019.

"I had a great opportunity to race for Mercedes and start this journey from the bottom. Of course, it's coming to an end now with Mercedes," said Vandoorne.

McLaren will be taking over Mercedes' entry in Formula E from next season, but Vandoorne is still looking to build on his success in the championship.

"I've managed to establish myself as one of the winning drivers and now I'm a World Champion in Formula E," he added.

"That's the way I see my future and where I want to put my focus and my efforts."

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