Formula One: Alonso Indy 500 deal 'barking mad', says Horner

Paterniano Del Favero
Aprile 18, 2017

The Woking-based team has made an unprecedented move in entering a vehicle at Indianapolis for Alonso, who will skip the Monaco Grand Prix to take part in IndyCar's showpiece event.

Bernie Ecclestone says he would have done whatever he could to stop Fernando Alonso skipping the Monaco Grand Prix in order to race at the 2017 Indy 500 if he was still in control of Formula One.

The decision has generally met a positive reaction in the F1 paddock, although drivers such as Sergio Perez and Lewis Hamilton have said they would not opt to miss a grand prix so they could do another race.

Jenson Button will make a one-race return to fill Alonso's seat in Monte Carlo, but Horner can not foresee him allowing one of the Red Bull drivers to do the same as Alonso.

"Look, it's a hard one for Fernando, he's having a tough time", Horner, smiling, told reporters at the Bahrain Grand Prix. "Zak's got the problem he's got a depressed driver on his hands, he's trying to keep him motivated", Horner said. He is just going to jump in the auto. Turn 1 is a proper turn, it's easy flat the whole way round.

"The Indy 500 is a great race, but it's not necessarily a race that interests me", the Haas F1 driver Grosjean told France's RMC in Bahrain.

"I'm thrilled to be making a one-off return to Formula One racing, and I couldn't think of a better place to make that return than my adopted home Grand Prix of Monaco", Button said in the McLaren statement.

At his first appearance back on the racing circuit since Liberty Media took control of the organization, Ecclestone continued: "it's probably good for him", confirming he views the incident as a good opportunity for the driver but added: "I think if I could have persuaded McLaren not to go I would have done it". I believe if a driver commits to a team, it is a bit like disappearing with another girlfriend halfway through the year and then coming back.

Brown said he backed Alonso to rise ro the challenge of the famed Indy 500. He is studying Indianapolis, it's obviously going to be a challenge but he wants a challenge.

Jenson Button will deputise for the 35-year-old in Monte Carlo after signing a contract as a replacement driver with Mclaren last year. "I think it's going to be good, everybody's going to be watching". He's very smart, that's what you need to be around Indianapolis.

Brown responded on Twitter by posting a picture of Horner jumping into a pool in what can best described as questionable clothing, captioning the tweet: "Er. sorry Christian, which of us needs to see a psychiatrist?!"

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