McLaren’s CEO Zak Brown has been forced again to rule out a future drive in their Formula 1 team for Fernando Alonso.
The two-time World Champion quit F1 and McLaren at the end of 2018 to pursue interests outside of the series.
And it’s one of his projects – the Indy500 – which has caused the McLaren return rumours to reemerge.
After Honda vetoed a drive with Andretti for the event in May, McLaren confirmed that they will enter a third car in the Indy500 for Alonso.
The Spaniard has confirmed his desire to return to Formula 1 in 2021, so it’s no surprise that this sparked talk of a third stint with McLaren, but Brown was clear that it isn’t going to happen.
“No. We are in a different place now,” he is quoted by grandpx.news.
“That’s not a reflection on him, we have two great young drivers who are really fast that are working well together. The fans like them and we have a rhythm now and would not want to disturb that.
“We’ve always said we’re open to running Fernando in a third car for the 500, so we’re delighted he’s decided to join us.”
It wasn’t long ago that Alonso’s position as a McLaren Ambassador came to an end, but he said his relationship with the brand remains “special”.
“It was important for me to explore my options for the Indy 500 but McLaren has always been at the top,” he explained.
“I have a special relationship with McLaren – we’ve been through a lot together and that creates a bond, a loyalty that is strong.”