Fernando Alonso will fly into Birmingham, Ala. on Tuesday for a seat fitting and spend Wednesday running one of Michael Andretti’s Dallara-Hondas around Barber Motorsports Park.
“Fernando is excited to try an Indy car on a road course,” Zak Brown texted to RACER on Saturday morning. The McLaren CEO will accompany the two-time Formula 1 champion to Alabama for his first laps in an Indy car since his impressive debut at the 2017 Indianapolis 500.
Andretti, who has been working to try and put together a full-time deal to run Alonso in the 2019 IndyCar series, told RACER on Friday he “wasn’t sure” the test was happening but flights and rooms for his crew have been booked and Brown confirmed it was a go after a couple of false starts. IndyCar officials were notified of the “driver evaluation” by Andretti Autosports as well.
Ray Gosselin, engineer for Ryan Hunter-Reay, will work with the 37-year-old Spaniard in Alabama.
Alonso announced earlier this summer he would not be back in F1 next year and, besides his WEC sports car ride with Toyota, has nothing else officially in place for 2019. But he’s told IndyCar veterans Tony Kanaan and Oriol Servia he would consider running the IndyCar series in a full-time capacity if the right opportunity presented itself.