Stoffel Vandoorne insists he is looking forward to going up against Fernando Alonso next year at McLaren.
It was announced at Monza that the 24-year-old Belgian rookie will make his full-time F1 debut next year with the British team.
Spaniard Alonso had a bad experience of going up against a highly-rated rookie at McLaren, clashing badly with Lewis Hamilton in 2007.
But he joked last weekend: “Stoffel is not English, so it will be fine.”
Vandoorne is also looking forward to the challenge.
“I see it as an advantage to be able to debut alongside him,” he told the Belgian broadcaster Sporza.
“Alonso is a double world champion and is considered one of the best drivers in F1. If I can prove that I am better than him, that’s good for my career,” Vandoorne insisted.
He also said he sees the opportunity of debuting with a top team like McLaren as positive.
“There is more pressure, but if you want to be world champion, you have to be able to deal with it,” said the Belgian.