Toyota chief hints at NASCAR road course chance for Alonso
Toyota Racing Development’s David Wilson says the possibility of getting two-time Formula 1 world champion and Le Mans 24 Hours winner Fernando Alonso behind the wheel at one of NASCAR’s road course races in future “would be fun”.
Alonso drove Jimmie Johnson’s Hendrick Chevrolet at Bahrain’s Sakhir circuit last year as part of their winter ride swap, and won Le Mans with Toyota last year as part of his FIA World Endurance Championship commitments with the team.
Before that Cup car test, Alonso said that he “sees NASCAR as a top of motorsports in the U.S. and that means a lot.”
Wilson, the president and general manager of Toyota’s U.S. performance arm TRD, met Alonso at the launch of the new Toyota Supra road car in Detroit in January.
“He was there because of his association with our WEC team,” said Wilson. “He was on stage at the Supra launch with Akio [Toyoda, president of Toyota], who had a friendly jab at him ‘good luck in the Rolex 24 even though you’re not with us’ [Alonso won the race with Cadillac].
“We had dinner with him there one night, he’s looking at the entire horizon – I don’t think there’s anything that’s not a possibility for Fernando. Who knows?
“Putting him behind the wheel of a road course race, at Sonoma or Watkins Glen, that would be fun. I don’t know if it’s possible, but he’d be very interested – absolutely. It would be great for business.
“What he did [at the Rolex 24] was awesome. As a fan, I watched and I was compelled.”
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