Former Force India deputy team principal Robert Fernley has been placed in charge of McLaren's IndyCar programme. The Woking outfit confirmed last week that it would enter the Indianapolis 500 in 2019 with Fernando Alonso.
McLaren has not yet confirmed if it will enter the race with more than one entry, however it will not be entering a full season next year. Speaking about the appointment, McLaren CEO Zak Brown says that he will be a great addition to the programme.
“Bob is a fantastic operator and someone I respect greatly,” he said. "His experience and leadership will be essential for us on this project. He is particularly talented at putting effective teams together and extracting maximum performance with finite resources. The Indy 500 is no easy race and Bob’s is a key role, so I’m delighted he’s on board.”
Fernley stepped down from Force India when it was taken over by a consortium of investors led by Lawrence Stroll over the summer break. Fernley has previously worked in America in Can-Am and IndyCar, but has not been involved in the US series since 1990.
“Heading back to The Brickyard will be a very special experience for me and I am proud to be leading this McLaren project and team," Fernley said."The 500 is a hell of a challenge and we have incredibly strong competitors to overcome if we’re to be successful. We will need to prepare well for the month of May and that work starts now.”