Fernando Alonso has announced that he will compete in the Indy 500 for McLaren this year, as he takes another run at the final stage of the much-coveted Triple Crown.
The Spaniard has long targeted the fabled trio of victories in the Monaco Grand Prix, the Le Mans 24-hour race and the Indy 500, and despite winning the first two on two separate occasions, the Indy 500 has continued to elude him.
He is bidding to be just the second man in history to claim the accolade after Graham Hill to claim the Triple Crown, and he said of his involvement: “I am a racer and the Indy 500 is the greatest race in the world.
“I love the incredible fans who make it so special for all of us drivers and make me want to come back. I have maximum respect for this race and everyone who competes in it, and all I want to do is race against them and give my best, as always.
“It was important for me to explore my options for this race, but Arrow McLaren SP has always been at the top. I have a special relationship with McLaren; we’ve been through a lot together and that creates a bond, a loyalty that is strong.
“I’m focused and excited to begin our preparations."
Alonso will be the experienced head to the young duo of Pato O'Ward and Oliver Askew in the No. 66 Chevy for Arrow McLaren SP, and will look to create a cathartic experience after coming so close to victory in 2017, only for engine failure to deny him 24 laps from the finish.
McLaren supremo Zak Brown - who recently ruled out a return for the two-time world champion to Formula 1 in 2021 - expressed his satisfaction that Alonso was joining them for another tilt.
He said: "Fernando is one of the greatest drivers in the sport and it's fantastic to have him as part of the team.
"Fernando is quite a thoughtful individual when he takes a decision on what he wants to race. There was heavy speculation he might go elsewhere, but I think parallel conversations have been going on the entire time."
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