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Featured F1 Half Term Report: Rate the Grid - Stoffel Vandoorne

Discussion in 'Formula 1' started by Paul Jeffrey, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. Paul Jeffrey

    Paul Jeffrey
    RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief Staff Premium

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    Rate the Grid - Stoffel Vandoorne .jpg
    McLaren Honda driver and RaceDepartment member Stoffel Vandoorne is the next one up in our mid season 'rate the grid' community feature.

    Expectations were high for Vandoorne ahead of 2017, with a glittering career in the junior formula behind the driver and an incredibly impressive one off debut last year in place of Fernando Alonso, Vandoorne is seen by many as future champion material.

    Up against arguably the best driver in the sport, and strapped into a reluctant McLaren car, Vandoorne hasn't had an easy time of it in his debut season of Formula One. Despite the many challenges that face the Belgian driver, 2017 has slowly started to come together for Vandoorne, with signs of increasing pace against his double World Champion team mate and a point last time out in Hungary, both driver and team will be hopeful of better things to come in the second half of the year.

    Now that the 2017 points scoring first is off his back, Vandoorne will be keen to remind people of his obvious potential and ensure his stock remains high heading into the new year..

    Vote now to tell us how you rate the first half of 2017 for Stoffel Vandoorne, and leave a comment below!

    For more from the world of Formula One, check out the Formula One sub forum here at RaceDepartment and get involved with our awesome community..

    Stoffel Vandoorne.jpg Stoffel Vandoorne 3.jpg Stoffel Vandoorne 2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
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  2. Coffer

    Coffer

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    Only better than Stroll and Palmer. I can forgive him in Hungary as his race was ruined by a bad pit stop, but he's really struggling to learn the car and doing it at a much slower rate than any F1 driver ought to, even rookies. He has no pace whatsoever right now. Most overrated GP2 champion in years.

    Still better than Jenson.
     
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  3. Fabian Biehne

    Fabian Biehne
    Premium

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    I had high expectations but Alonso with his 36 years is destroying him right now. Hope he can recover from that in the last part of the season and improve.
     
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  4. Sky

    Sky

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    are these driver threads coming in order of crapness? :roflmao:
     
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  5. Ghoults

    Ghoults

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    I'd imagine a lot of the resources at mclaren goes toward making the car to alonso's liking. That doesn't necessarily mean the car won't suit vandoorne or that they are completely ignoring vandoornes feedback either. But it could also mean alonso gets the new parts first and gets the better pit strategy always. Vandoorne has been getting some really horrible reliability issues too and has often time missed a lot of kilometers of running just because the car is kaputt. Early season was pretty brutal for vandoorne especially.

    So it is difficult spot for vandoorne compared to someone like stroll who is driving a solid car that is not broken in 50% of the sessions. And more importantly stroll has a slow team mate in massa. Alonso is extracting 100% of that car every time the honda keeps going which is bound to make vandoorne look slow. Majority of the f1 grid would look slow against alonso.

    That being said vandoorne's driving has not been spectacular either. Never challenging alonso and always behind alonso in qualifying and race. Sometimes closer, sometimes farther away. Plus that passing attempt in spain was cringeworthy at best. It makes his racecraft look bad which doesn't really help him much when trying to look for positives. Maybe if his team mate was massa he would look really good. But as it is he just doesn't look anything special at the moment imho. There just have not been even one or two single races where he could have challenged alonso. To prove his mettle he needs to be able to do that. At least couple of times during the season.
     
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  6. LeSunTzu

    LeSunTzu
    Premium

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    He is doing a decent job in a difficult car with a monster as a team mate. He was in Q3 every time the car was competitive, and he even outqualified Alonso once. He failed to score points before Budapest, but Alonso only scored very little a couple of times.Nothing to be ashamed of.
     
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  7. bastoner97

    bastoner97

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    In the last races he made some steps forward, out qualifying Alonso in Silverstone and staying really close in Hungary. He still miss some race pace it seems, but anyway not a bad first half of the season.

    Imo he's fast in tracks that he already knows since the Gp2 days (Monaco, Silvertone and Hungary in Q3) but he struggles more than aspected in the tracks where he never raced
     
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  8. Coffer

    Coffer

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    Keep in mind that Boullier explicitly said that his driving style doesn't suit the car at all.
     
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  9. Gopher04

    Gopher04
    Old But Not Obsolete.. Premium

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    It was always going to be a challenge for him when he has Alonso for a team m8, also lets face facts here Honda really doesn't help the situation as well..but on the flip side what Alonso is doing with the car so far is outstanding, give him a decent package and I believe he would win another championship..
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2017
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  10. Jimlaad43

    Jimlaad43
    Nice apex, I'll take it! Staff Premium

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    McLaren's reliability has been ju Stoffel.
     
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  11. Leonardo Chaves

    Leonardo Chaves

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    6, he's improving, Stoffel has qualified close to Fernando the last couple of races.
     
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  12. Fanapryde

    Fanapryde

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    Try to learn a car when you have that piece of crappy engine to your disposal. Even teammate Fernando (who is amongst the best - if not the best - drivers on the grid) struggles more than he would like to, not only due to poor performance but also having to adapt several times per weekend because things have changed...once again...
    I feel sad for Vandoorne. He seems to stay calm, not a wrong word about the material.
    Can you imagine what would happen if Verstappen had to drive this car ?
    No, really, Stoffel was not faultless, but I think he is doing a rather good job.
     
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  13. darkelf1

    darkelf1

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    Eh, he's OK....:thumbsup:
     
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  14. rubaru

    rubaru

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    The only way to assess his worthiness as an F1 driver is to compare him to his teammate. Well, when it's ALO, that's bloody ridiculous. A 2-time world champion with 280+ starts vs. what amounts to a rookie? Comparing him to other newer drivers this season might be reasonable, but the machinery is obviously different. STR and OCO have more points because they are in a better car, but are they better drivers? PAL, with zero points, is in the Renault, which HUL has taken for 26 points. What we're not seeing is how well VAN is communicating with his team about improving the car. Is he good at providing valuable information, or is he like GUT and just complaining about what a crap car he has with no constructive criticism?
    I actually think he's doing a pretty good job. He's taking a car that ought to be propping up the time sheets and consistently finishing P11 or P12. Start watching him now, though. The last 3 races have really been an up-swing for McLaren. I think points for both ALO and VAN will be a lot more consistent on those tracks that aren't so power-dependent.
     
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  15. slowcrash101

    slowcrash101

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    He's faster than the qualifying times suggest, but he has some ways to go, his actual race pace isn't far off Alonso, at least when they're both in clean air. I'll judge him more harshly as the Honda power unit improves it's pace, and he's not just doing glorified test sessions in the races.
     
  16. Jan Larsen

    Jan Larsen
    Premium

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    5. Not fast enough when the car works. But its slowly starting to get better and usually not far behind Alonso i FP and Q. Race is another matter though. Needs to work on his own setup and more pace in race.
     
  17. James Cook

    James Cook
    Marcas fan

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    Really difficult one. Vandoorne undoubtedly has the talent but he's got a troublesome car and superstar teammate to contend with.

    6/10 - I think he's doing ok.
     
  18. Nick Hill

    Nick Hill
    Premium

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    Wow, I'm one of the lower votes here, I see - I'm a 3 on Vandoorne.

    He's kind of difficult to gauge, as the reliability on the McLaren is so awful it's hard to get an apples to apples comparison with Alonso.

    That said, the few instances we do have where these guys were both able to bring it home, Alonso has proven to be quite a bit faster. Granted, in my opinion Alonso is unquestionably one of the quickest guys on the grid so it's not like I have/had an expectation that Vandoorne would be routinely beating him...but having the exact same car and with the GP2 accolades that Vandoorne brings to the table? I would like to see him a lot hotter on Alonso's heels than he is.
     
  19. paracletus

    paracletus

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    Afraid to open the post when it's poor old daniel kivyat's turn for a report :unsure:
     
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  20. M-Bimmer

    M-Bimmer
    Premium

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    A Solid 7 because he is doing his best unlike Palmer.
    Unfair to compare him with Alonso (but he out qualified Alonso once so that's an achievement :roflmao:)

    Still would rather have JB instead.