McLaren will consider "strategic alliance" for Indy 500 return

McLaren CEO Zak Brown says that the company will consider whether it needs "some sort of strategic alliance" for when it decides it is ready to return to the Indianapolis 500.

McLaren will consider "strategic alliance" for Indy 500 return

In 2017, Fernando Alonso drove a full Andretti entry, but McLaren opted to go it alone in 2019, with some technical support from Carlin. Alonso was one of three non-qualifiers for this year's race, along with two Carlin entries.

Read Also:

Brown says that McLaren will review what went wrong before making a call on future plans.

"When we go back, it will be McLaren," Brown said. "Now, whether we need some sort of strategic alliance to help... being a one-car team is not a good place to be around Indianapolis. I think Penske puts out an extra car, Andretti puts out a bunch of cars, Carpenter.

"So I think we want to go back as McLaren, we would not do it as in '17 where it was another team. But do we need some sort of strategic alliance, probably for the benefit of being a multiple-car operation?"

Brown declined to blame the decision to co-operate with a relatively inexperienced team for Alonso's failure to qualify.

"I don't want to compare other teams. It's clear McLaren didn't qualify because of McLaren issues. Carlin is a service provider, helped give us bandwidth.

"Would it have been different with a different partner? I think given the mistakes that we made, I'm not sure anyone would have got us through those instead of ourselves.

"2017 was a completely different programme. We partnered with Andretti, it was their car, it was primarily their people.

"This year we went about it pretty much independent. Carlin was a much smaller resource for us, they weren't running the car, it's McLaren's fault for not qualifying. So I think it's hard to compare the two, because we didn't race in a like-for-like scenario."

Brown is confident that McLaren's shareholders will approve a return to Indianapolis, despite this year's disappointment.

"I think they would. I don't want to speak for them, but the commentary I've had back from them is 'We're racers, and let's get it next time.' But I've not made the formal request, because I've also not formalised in my own mind when I want to go back.

"We've got to digest it, make sure we sit around the table with all the right people and go, 'Do we feel prepared and have we learned from our mistakes, have we recovered?'. And if that becomes a yes, then I'm confident we'll go back to Indy.

"All the reasons why we think McLaren should be at Indy remain, and when you are in racing you're going to have highs and lows; that was obviously a very significant low – the biggest low of my 25-year career in motor racing.

"But I think you have to dust yourself off, learn by your mistakes, and come back fighting. So that's what we intend to do."

shares
comments
Dixon on Indy 500 strategy, weather, and IndyCar aerokit
Previous article

Dixon on Indy 500 strategy, weather, and IndyCar aerokit

Next article

Indy 500: Pagenaud beats Rossi, scores Penske’s 18th Indy win

Indy 500: Pagenaud beats Rossi, scores Penske’s 18th Indy win
Load comments
Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021 Prime

Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021

In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and series sophomore Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers

IndyCar
Nov 22, 2021
How Marcus Ericsson finally unlocked his potential in IndyCar Prime

How Marcus Ericsson finally unlocked his potential in IndyCar

Marcus Ericsson enjoyed a breakout year in the IndyCar Series in 2021, winning twice and finishing sixth in points with Chip Ganassi Racing. How did he finally unlock the potential that was masked by five years of toil in Formula 1 with Caterham and Sauber/Alfa Romeo?

IndyCar
Nov 16, 2021
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win Prime

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win

Saturday, Oct. 16th, marks the 10th anniversary Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500.

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Prime

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Jack Harvey’s move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate, but their combined strength could prove golden, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 15, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Prime

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong résumé and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear. By David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star Prime

2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star

Alex Palou has captured Chip Ganassi Racing's 14th IndyCar drivers' championship, and in truly stellar manner. David Malsher-Lopez explains what made the Palou-Ganassi combo so potent so soon.

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Prime

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar
Sep 24, 2021
IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021