The Mercedes Benz EQ ABB FIA Formula E drivers Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries had an exciting day in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday as the pair took part in the official post 2020 Formula One season Young Driver Test for the Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team.
The pair completed a 192 laps and speaking following the action, Stoffel Vandoorne, the official Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team test and reserve driver comented saying:
I had a lot of fun out there today in the W11. I managed to complete plenty of laps with both some short and longer runs. It was a pretty smooth day and I was quickest in the morning session as well. I want to say a massive thank you to the team for giving me this opportunity, because the chance to drive a Championship-winning F1 car doesn’t come around very often and is very unique. It was a real privilege to drive W11 and a really great day. I had to cut the afternoon a little short because I had to leave to the airport for a PR commitment, but nonetheless I’m really happy with the day we’ve had in the car and the opportunity to end the year driving W11.
Nyck de Vries commented on his time in the W11 saying:
Today was very special, making my Formula One debut. What an incredible car, it’s from a different planet really. You can brake so late and carry so much speed through the corners. It was a real pleasure to drive. I’m really pleased with the progression I made throughout the day and the work we completed. I was quite surprised with how quickly I felt comfortable in the car and the team was very supportive, doing everything they could to make me feel as comfortable as possible. A massive thanks to Mercedes for this very unique and special opportunity because it was a great day in the car.
Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team chief engineer Andrew Shovlin commented saying:
Today was the last time we’ll see the W11 on track for a few years, so it was nice to give it one last run with Nyck and Stoffel, our Formula E drivers. They both did a great job. Stoffel has driven some of our previous cars over the last few years, but this was his first time driving the W11, so it was interesting to get his feedback. Unfortunately, Stoffel had to leave early to make a commitment with the Formula E team and missed the cooler conditions at the end of the day, but we were able to get through a full programme. For Nyck, it was his first day in an F1 car and he’s impressed us with how quickly he was up to speed and his pace on low and high fuel. Both Stoffel and Nyck contribute to our F1 programme with simulator work so today has been a really useful opportunity to let them try the real thing, and a nice way for us to close off the 2020 season.