Alonso to drive NASCAR in Bahrain car swap

Mat Coch

Saturday 3rd November, 2018 - 12:54pm

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Fernando Alonso

Fernando Alonso will drive Jimmie Johnson’s Chevrolet Camaro NASCAR as part of a car swap in Bahrain later this month.

The swap will see Johnson in turn climb into Alonso’s McLaren, though testing regulations will prevent the use of a current spec machine.

Both Alonso and Johnson have been using social media to release teaser videos over recent weeks suggesting at a collaboration.

In the latest video, the pair simultaneously ask “will you let me drive your car?”

Speaking to reporters in Texas, Johnson said he and Alonso had met in Charlotte during a media conference in January.

“We met there, traded up numbers, stayed in touch,” Johnson said.

‘Hey, we ought to trade cars.’ And I was like, ‘You don’t have to ask me twice.’

“I went after it right away. I wasn’t going to let a passing comment slow me down.”

The car swap is part of a larger program for Johnson, who will head to McLaren to spend time in the team’s simulator ahead of the test.

Alonso was offered the same but scheduling conflicts prevented the Spaniard from taking up the opportunity.

One of Johnson’s NASCAR’s and a container filled with tyres has already been shipped to Bahrain, with McLaren set to offer the American a similar opportunity to gain extensive running in its car.

“We offered up the chance to let Alonso come run the Chevy simulator but the schedule didn’t work out from the beginning to do that,” Johnson said.

“It’s probably a bigger change for me to go from our cars to his, so he suggested stopping by McLaren, taking a tour of the shop, the city. I was like, ‘Oh yeah, I’ll take everything.’

“Why not? This is the chance of a lifetime. I’ll take everything they will let me do. I’m all for it.”

The car swap is set to take place on November 26.

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