Stoffel Vandoorne has reiterated his desire to step into F1 with McLaren-Honda next season but feels it is also a positive to demonstrate his potential to other teams.
The 2015 GP2 Series champion stepped in for the injured Fernando Alonso at the Bahrain Grand Prix for McLaren and duly proved his talents by out-qualifying team-mate Jenson Button while scoring the team's first championship point of the season.
Vandoorne sees his future at the Woking-based team by becoming the successor to either Button or Alonso next year but says contract talks are yet to begin as it is still very early in the season.
The 24-year-old, who starts his maiden Super Formula season in Japan this weekend, says his performance in Bahrain was not only a boost to his McLaren race seat chances for 2017 but also provided him with the platform to demonstrate his talents to other teams who have already voiced an interest in him.
“I'm very happy with where I am with McLaren, I've got a contract here, so I think my performance in Bahrain will help things move forward for next year but it is still very early,” Vandoorne said. “My goal is definitely to be on the grid next year so I'm pushing hard for that.
“There were other teams but I am very happy at McLaren and I have a contract here. My goal is to be in the car here. To have a good weekend in Bahrain has probably helped and it is good to get my name on the market.
“There are a lot of talks going on which is good to get my name up there but I think last weekend helped it but we will see how things develop over the next few months.”