Zak Brown, CEO of McLaren Racing, has good reason to smile at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The team, celebrating their 60th anniversary with the Triple Crown livery, has all four drivers starting in the first three rows for the 107th running of the Indy 500 on Sunday.
Brown, who likes to race himself on a rare weekend off, talked about how his team would like to expand to four cars full-time in the NTT INDYCAR Series next year. A decision on this will probably be made in July of this season.
Brown is pleased with the way the Arrow McLaren team has worked this month to prepare their four cars and get the results they have had. But he stated, “I think we are biting off more than we can chew”.
Arrow McLaren has pushed the limits created by a small shop with insufficient room to support four cars. A much larger shop is planned to be built by 2025, and that would be able to host an expanded team.
Marcus Ericsson, the defending Indy 500 winner, was mentioned by Brown as a possible driver for that fourth car. Brown would definitely consider hiring the Swede, who will be a free agent at the end of this season.
Brown was also asked about Alex Palou, who caused a stir last season by announcing he was leaving Chip Ganassi Racing to join Arrow McLaren with an active contract in place with Ganassi Racing. Plans for Palou is to do F1 testing at the end of the IndyCar season for McLaren and to become a reserve driver in 2023.
Lucille Dust reporting live from Indianapolis