Stoffel Vandoorne admits he is facing a career first in racing, as he does not know what to expect when he steps up to F1 in 2017.
The Belgian will race for McLaren next season after a long-awaited promotion, spending 2016 racing in Japan after dominating the GP2 championship a year before. While Vandoorne is rated highly, he is not setting any targets at this stage because he says F1 is so different compared to every other category he has raced in previously.
Asked what would be a successful season in his eyes next year, Vandoorne told F1i: “World champion? Is that OK?!
"No, it’s the first time I go into a season when I don’t really know what to expect because there’s so many things that you don’t really have in your own hands.
"Whereas in the junior formulas you know everybody has the same car and the only thing you really have to focus on is building the team around you, making sure the car suits you and then doing better than the rest, then you can win the championship.
"It’s the first time I go into a season without really knowing what to expect, so I’m just using on as usual trying to focus on every detail with the team. I’m making sure we’re not forgetting things, on my side I’m pushing hard on the simulator and making sure I make no mistakes, operationally do everything right and then we’ll have to wait and see what the results are."