INDIANAPOLIS – It was revealed today that McLaren and Fernando Alonso would be coming to the Verizon IndyCar Series for the May 28 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500. That news sent shockwaves throughout the racing world, as a global iconic driver like Alonso is now going to race in the biggest race in the world.
Later on in the day, it was revealed that Michael Andretti will serve as Alonso’s strategist while Eric Bretzman will be his engineer. Alonso and McLaren will team with Andretti Autosport, hence the technical moves on his pit box.
Michael Andretti, was previously holding the same role on Marco Andretti’s car last year, and was on top of Ryan Hunter-Reay’s pit box before that. But, with some reshuffling this offseason, Bryan Herta moved from Alexander Rossi’s pit box to Marco’s and Michael brought in someone new for Rossi. He wasn’t on anyone’s pit box for 2017.
This is a huge move to get Alonso comfortable with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway rather quickly. Andretti, will be a good voice to have and Bretzman is an accomplished engineer.
Plus, Andretti Autosport has shown the last few years that they’ve been great in getting rookies up to speed pretty quickly. It worked with Kurt Busch in 2014 and with Rossi last year.
They have a good plan in place, one that should work again.