Rossi: Alonso to IndyCar would be 'massive'
31 August 2017 – Alexander Rossi says that the IndyCar Series would be given a "massive" boost if Fernando Alonso made a full-time switch to the category for 2018.
Alonso's future has been the subject of much speculation in recent months, with McLaren-Honda still struggling, and his contract expiring at the end of the season.
He recently argued that his stock value has "never been as high as now", given "the offers that I've had", though remained coy over what he will decide to do.
Earlier this year, Alonso skipped the Monaco Grand Prix to contest the Indianapolis 500, running up front throughout the event before an engine failure in the race.
Should the Spaniard opt to leave Formula 1 for a different series, Rossi, who was one of Alonso's team-mates at the Indy 500, says he would be weclomed with open arms.
"I think it would be massive for the championship," said Rossi.
"We saw the response that we got from him coming to the 500 and obviously there's more of a global reach that race has versus [other races on the calendar].
"With that being said, I think there'd be a lot of follow-over. He's a pretty big name in the world of motorsports.
"I think it would definitely grow the sport, especially in Europe. It might even open the opportunity with a fan base there to have races there in the future.
"I think that, with Fernando, there's not going to be any negative that comes from it and I think that he as a driver will just enjoy the chance that every single day he shows up at a racetrack, he has a shot at it.
"He doesn't have that right now and hasn't for a couple of years, and that wears on you."
Rossi also has no doubts that Alonso would be able to cope with the challenge, though talked up the high level of competition throughout the IndyCar field.
"I think that Fernando wouldn't have any struggles adapting," he commented.
"We saw that at Indianapolis, but I think what he would be continually surprised by, as I was, just how good the guys in this championship are.
"One tiny mistake – whether it's from driving or set-up direction – could cost you a tenth and could literally be the difference between [running in] fifth or 12th.
"We see that every single session, every single weekend and I think that's pretty crazy."