F1 McLaren driver Fernando Alonso has gone all-in with his IndyCar testing as the big day at the end of the month draws nearer.
The venerated Spaniard has been pounding the pavement non-stop. Completing more laps than most on his first outing at the track with the McLaren Honda Andretti car, Fernando Alonso is making the best of his time at the track while he’s got it. He finished in fourth at the end of the day with a top lap speed of 219.533 MPH – not an all too shabby start for the hopeful Alonso.
— McLarenHondaAndretti (@McLarenIndy) May 17, 2017
While he’s certainly making the most out of the situation that he’s in, there’s no question that Alonso is on a truncated schedule. With the month hallway over, the Spaniard will have a lot of ground to make up for as he readies himself to be pitted against drivers that have practiced on ovals for the majority of their lives.
As if a sign from God, nature itself sent Alonso a little bit of wind to contend with, forcing him to jump on learning about the various sort of inclement conditions that could affect his performance during the Indy 500. Whilst Fernando admitted the conditions were “tricky”, he was happy to put the car back to the garage in once piece as “everything went according to plan” – a sensation that he’s been sorely missing at the McLaren-Honda project in Formula One.
“It was tricky, definitely. The conditions today didn’t help, so [there was] very little running for the big guys, but for me any condition is still a good lesson.
So today was about that, learning how to drive with these strong winds and how to set up the car corner-by-corner.
Everything went according to plan. The team used those runs also to test something in the background on engine tuning, so it was a productive day.” – Fernando Alonso
With his successful tests has also come a surge of Fernando fanatics that are eager to get as much time around the famous driver as possible:
“There is a lot of support here from the fans, they get very close to us here in the pitlane, in the garage.
It seems that everywhere I go they follow me. I think some of the other drivers are taking advantage of that. They wait [until] I go, then they go without trouble.
That’s the way it is, I’m new here so they all need the autograph for the first time. I hope tomorrow they don’t need it for the second time.” – Fernando Alonso
Alonso has shown that he’s ready to do all it takes to succeed in the Indy 500 – so much so that the other IndyCar drivers are taking notice. Whether Fernando will be able to hold on to his high-ranking performance in the middle of the greatest stint in IndyCar racing as an altogether different story.