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McLaren “very disenchanted” by Palou contract dispute, authorized proceedings start

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Palou, the 2021 IndyCar title winner and present clear factors chief, appeared poised to affix the Arrow McLaren outfit for 2024 however has now seemingly gone back on the deal. 

He plans to as an alternative stay with Chip Ganassi Racing – the workforce having beforehand filed a lawsuit in opposition to Palou, who signed a McLaren contract throughout 2022.

Plausibly, Palou – who qualifies for an FIA superlicence to race in F1 – might need seen any potential grand prix path with McLaren blocked by the robust rookie efficiency of Oscar Piastri.

Following the dispute earlier this month, Zak Brown confirmed on the 2023 Dutch Grand Prix that McLaren has begun formal authorized proceedings in opposition to Palou and his enterprise.

The American mentioned: “Alex knowledgeable us that he has no intention of honouring his contract with us in IndyCar or Method 1. Now we have a contract so [this is] now in a authorized course of.

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“We filed within the London courts final week in opposition to him – each as an individual and his enterprise entity. We’ll simply let the authorized proceedings carry the state of affairs ahead.”

Brown cited Daniel Ricciardo breaking a bone in his hand throughout a Friday observe shunt at Zandvoort, meaning he will now miss the race, as to why Palou might need been higher provide ready “across the hoop” for a real McLaren berth.

He mentioned: “I do not know what’s going by way of his thoughts as a result of I haven’t spoken with him.

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing, on the pit wall

Photograph by: Michael Potts / Motorsport Images

“However issues transfer quick in Method 1. Drivers can break their wrists immediately.

“If you wish to do Method 1, it’s good to hold across the hoop and see what alternatives are offered.”

He added his disappointment on the approach the saga has performed out, given Brown felt a detailed working relationship with Palou.

“Very disappointing,” was his response. “We had an excellent relationship.

“He hasn’t personally communicated with me about it, which is slightly disappointing given all that we’ve accomplished for him and the alternatives that we’ve offered.

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“I don’t suppose his resolution has something to do with McLaren per se. Our relationship was very robust so very disenchanted with the way it’s been dealt with.

“On a private stage, I feel {our relationships} with our drivers is one thing McLaren takes very significantly, and I feel we do job of making a household setting, so to be let down in that method is fairly disappointing.”

McLaren plans to run its IndyCar driver Patricio O’Ward within the 2021 Italian GP-winning MCL35M later this 12 months beneath the Testing of Earlier Automobiles rule.

Brown additionally reckons it’s “enterprise as traditional” when it comes to how McLaren will satisfy the need to run a rookie driver in an FP1 session between now and the tip of the season.

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