Scott Dixon hopes Fernando Alonso inspires more cross-series drivers
Reigning IndyCar Champion Scott Dixon hopes Fernando Alonso’s participation in multiple series will open doors for more drivers to take a similar approach.
Alonso linked up with Wayne Taylor Racing for the Rolex Daytona 24 hours, he and team-mates Jordan Taylor, Renger Van Der Zende and Kamui Kobayashi went on to win the rain-shortened event.
Alonso brought his Formula 1 career to a close last year but is still competing in the World Endurance Championship and in May will return to Indianapolis for his second tilt at the 500.
Drivers competing in cross series racing – especially those from F1 – has diminished over the decades due to calendar increases and internal political pressures.
However, Nico Hulkenberg bucked the trend in 2015 by racing for Porsche at the Le Mans 24 Hours, going on to win the race alongside Nick Tandy and Earl Bamber.
Dixon is hopeful that more drivers can compete in multiple series going forward.
“I think it’s cool — I think it’s huge for the sport,” Dixon told Racer. “Obviously as a driver, you just want to be on an even footing and race against the best. From day to day that can change; it’s constantly a moving target.
"Contractually it’s very tough. I know in my situation alone with Chip (Ganassi) it gets tough. But that opens a lot more eyes and maybe allows it to somewhat be OK."
Alonso is also set to return and try his hand at the Indianapolis 500 once more with McLaren Racing as he seeks to try and complete the unofficial motorsport 'triple crown'.
"It’s very beneficial to IndyCar racing,” said Dixon of Alonso’s presence.
“We all know what a huge talent Fernando is and what he’s achieved and I think going back to the crossovers that he’s been doing and chasing some of these marquee events is cool to see, because in our current sport that’s just typically not allowed.
"It’s great to get to race Fernando, him stepping out of his comfort zone is really cool to see too and what he’s achieved so far has been really cool."