Fernando Alonso allowed to chase Triple Crown with new McLaren Contract
With the new McLaren contract, Fernando Alonso has been allowed to race at events outside of Formula 1 if it doesn’t clash with a race weekend. Although this year, the team did allow Alonso to miss the Monaca Grand Prix to race at Indianapolis 500 instead. However, considering the team’s performance and reliability issues this season, it seemed fair. With the team switching from Honda engine to Renault engine for the coming season, McLaren is expected to be far more competitive.
Alonso personally took a lot of time to analyze the McLaren-Renault partnership himself before making any sort of commitment. He has insisted that the Woking team hasn’t forgotten how to win, and believes with a Renault engine powering the back of a McLaren chassis, they will be able to win very soon.
"I took my time to really study everything that I could, and we see in the last races that Red Bull were on the podium with both cars in Malaysia and Suzuka," Alonso added.
"We know what the Renault engine can do and that gives us extra confidence."
Alonso has frequently admitted he is targeting the Triple Crown – winning Le Mans 24 Hours, the Indy 500, and the Monaco GP. He impressed at the Indy 500 this year for McLaren-Andretti, an event Alonso was allowed to race at by the team, which Zak Brown arranged.
But while the Indy 500 once again clashes with the Monaco GP in 2018 - which Alonso has claimed he won’t miss next year - he could yet race in the Le Mans 24 Hours. It is also widely claimed that he could take part in the Daytona 24 Hour next January in preparation for Le Mans.
When asked if Alonso's deal contained the a clause to race at other events, Brown said "some other activities are possible".
"There's not a 'Le Mans clause' per se," said Brown.
‘’There is an understanding that if Fernando would like to do some additional racing that doesn't compromise our Formula 1 efforts then we'll be open to that conversation and flexible.‘’
"As you saw with Indianapolis earlier this year, we're an organisation that likes to race and Fernando Alonso is the biggest racer in this pit lane."