Report: Alonso rejected in pitch for Indy 500 ride
NEW YORK,. Two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso has been rebuffed by two IndyCar teams in his bid to drive a one-off entry for the 104th Indianapolis 500, NBC Sports reported yesterday.
Ed Carpenter says he rejected the Spaniard’s pitch to add a car because he already has one extra entry for the May 24 oval classic, according to a report on the network’s website.
“We’re not positioned to run more than three. We’re a two-car team,” Carpenter said. “If we doubled the size of our team for May, it wouldn’t be good for everybody.”
The American will drive one car with Dutchman Rinus VeeKay in another and an extra entry for Indy-area native Conor Daly, who was a career-best 10th last year in his sixth Indy 500 start.
Alonso, 38, was reportedly poised to drive for Honda-powered Andretti Autosport before the enginemaker rejected the plan.
There are other Chevrolet-powered IndyCar teams but Roger Penske’s top Chevy lineup already has an extra fourth car for 44-yar-old Brazilian Helio Castroneves, who seeks to match the career Indy 500 win record with a fourth victory.
Alonso won the 2005 and 2006 F1 crowns and retired after the 2018 season. He raced in the 2017 Indy 500, starting fifth and leading 27 laps before his engine failed 21 laps from the finish. He placed 24th.
Last year, Alonso attempted to qualify for the race but was edged in qualifying for the last spot in the 33-car field. — AFP