Indianapolis Motor Speedway announces continued relationship with Chevrolet

Leave a comment

Indianapolis Motor Speedway announced Thursday a new multi-year  extension of its deal with Chevrolet.

The agreement means Chevrolet will continue as an official sponsor of the Verizon IndyCar Series’ Grand Prix of Indianapolis (May 9), the Indianapolis 500 (May 24) and NASCAR’s Brickyard 400 (July 26).

Chevrolet will provide official cars, safety vehicles and the pace car at all three events. The Indianapolis 500 will mark the 25th time a Chevy has served as the official pace car for the race.

“The Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Chevrolet have over a century of history together and we’re delighted with the opportunity to continue that rich heritage,” said J. Douglas Boles, Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s president in a release. “Race fans will see Chevrolets all over IMS during the Month of May and also in July, where Chevy will continue to be the only car to ever lead the field at the Brickyard 400.”

On the track, a Chevrolet has won the last 12 Brickyard 400 events, but only one Indy 500 since 2003.

Fernando Alonso will decide this summer whether to pursue F1 again

Leave a comment

Fernando Alonso said he will determine by this summer if he would consider a return to Formula One next season.

After announcing Tuesday that he will return to Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May with Arrow McLaren Racing SP, Alonso said “right now the Indy 500 will take all of my concentration” but left the door open for F1 in 2021.

“In my case, probably during the summer period, I’ll make a decision on 2021 if Formula One is still appealing to me,” Alonso told IndyCar on NBC announcer Leigh Diffey in an interview (watch the video above). “The 2021 rules (in F1) are definitely a step forward, and hopefully things can be more mixed and not only three teams capable of winning races. So all this factors into play. I may consider that possibility.”

Alonso won consecutive Formula One championships in 2005-06 with Renault. He has 32 victories in an F1 career that started in 2001 and also includes stints at Ferrari and McLaren.

His last victory on the circuit was May 12, 2013 in Barcelona. He is winless in his most recent 110 starts, including the past 77 races with McLaren in 2015-18.

The Guardian recently reported that McLaren CEO Zak Brown said Alonso wouldn’t be returning to F1 with the team.

Alonso also told Diffey that returning to F1 from a two-season absence wouldn’t necessarily be linked to McLaren’s performance.

“I think they did well last year, and hopefully they make another step forward and close to the top three because they deserve it and are a fantastic team,” he said.

Though he is optimistic about more parity, Alonso said six-time champion Lewis Hamilton should be a favorite for the 2020 title based on preseason testing in which Mercedes turned heads with a new steering system.

“It seemed Mercedes is still quite competitive,” Alonso said. “They show enormous potential on the development side and on the progress from one year to next. Formula One is impossible to predict because many things happen in season.

“At the starting point, (Mercedes) are the favorites. When you have Lewis in the car and Mercedes with the potential they have, they have to be No. 1 probably.”