Rating is available when the video has been rented.
This feature is not available right now. Please try again later.
Published on Jan 8, 2018
Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso is excited to make his debut in the American endurance classic later this month but he is fully aware that he is blessed with a unique situation amongst global motorsport superstars.
The Spaniard made headlines last season when he skipped the prestigious Monaco Grand Prix to compete in the Indianapolis 500. Granted, he was in the midst of a terrible F1 season, plagued by McLaren-Honda mechanical woes that routinely kept him out of the points on a weekly basis.
But even with a new contract and an improved Renault power plant, Alonso is still both willing and allowed to spend times in other disciplines.
But could other active Formula 1 drivers follow him to the Rolex 24 or Indianapolis 500 in future seasons.
"I don't think so," Alonso said in the Daytona media center on Friday afternoon. "I don't think so. There is one already, Lance Stroll, racing with us this weekend. He loves racing. He's from Canada so this is part of his culture, this kind of racing, American championships.
"The other guys? I doubt it. In Europe, we focus all of our racing on one championship. As the teams became more professional, it takes more preparation and more track time and winter testing, so it's not easy for drivers to have more than one concept."
The difference for Alonso is McLaren Executive Director Zak Brown, the executive that allows his ace driver to compete in whatever events make sense for both himself and the overall company brand.
"I can do it because with Zak Brown and McLaren because they have a different vision, a wider vision of motorsports and I share that vision as well," he said. "We are launching a global vision of motorsports but I think we are doing that together.
"He is a very unique boss. He has this wider vision of motorsports. He is a commercial genius. He spent the last two years helping McLaren and now he's helping motorsports. He's not only my boss, he's my friend as well and he's doing great things for the sport."