Magnussen: ‘no way in hell’…maybe Indycar?

There is a certain comportment in grand prix racing that has been around for decades. If you can’t get a drive in Formula 1, perhaps a ride in Indycar is the next option. That old notion seems to be the one that McLaren reserve driver Kevin Magnussen is hanging his hat on for 2016:

“I’ve always loved IndyCar and I think there’s something about it which is really cool,” Magnussen added. “I just like old-school racing.

“We had such a short time to find the budget [this year] and then with what happened to Fernando McLaren needed me, and I didn’t really have the time to find the budget.”

There was a time (CART/CHAMP) that I would have agreed with him because in the CART days, the US was putting on some great racing in some interesting cars. These days? Well, perhaps it’s best I don’t say anything.

If McLaren take up their option on Jenson  Button for 2016, then Kevin has no driving role and for me, the extending of the Button contract should be an exciting affair but you’ll see no party favors or glass-breaking excitement coming from Woking. It will be a somber affair with tight lips and predator grey press releases from Mr. Bishop.

To those ends, I have to assume that driving in the World Endurance Championship would be a better option than Indycar these days. The cars, teams and engineers are more aligned with F1 and you would get a chance to drive alongside other F1 rejects and retirees. Not to mention the danger is supercharged in Indycar versus F1 or WEC. Going 220mph next to concrete walls is not for the faint of heart.

If I were Toyota, I think I would look strongly at Kevin for a ride in WEC. Their drivers have done fine but it seems there have been some fast laps left on the table over driver mistakes and perhaps a young, hungry Magnussen could be a shot in the arm for the team? Just a thought.


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Daniel Johnson

I disagree with the notion that Indycar isn’t producing some of the highest quality racing right now. I think they are solidly going in the right direction between returning to great tracks (Road America and Phoenix) and the quality of driver (just look at the list of drivers that won the Indy 500 in the early 2000’s). Also I’m partial because it has both oval and road courses in a much more interesting ratio than any other series. Is the current state of Indycar great compared to the “glory” days? Not quite, but it is getting closer with some actual… Read more »


I’m fully on board with Daniel. IndyCar has been producing some great racing, and they’ve cultivated a great ratio of oval/street/road circuits. The new engines are performing well, and the aero battle has made for an interesting season. Honda may gripe and complain, but their boy Rahal is just 9pts from the championship lead, so I’m not completely sold by their grumblings. I think Magnussen would find IndyCar challenging and enjoyable, but I also see the WEC argument. If he desires an eventual return to Formula 1, IndyCar is not the right step. I can’t think of a single driver… Read more »

Daniel Johnson

But Indycar used to be a good place for F1 drivers w/o rides to go and prove themselves (or cash a few more paychecks before retiring). Maybe this could be a throwback to that kind of relationship again. They are the series that are closest together in terms of skill set from the driver. I’d love to see more crossover.


Better racing than f1 in my opinion, more drivers have a chance of winning than f1,no not as good as cart, but i have enjoyed more of those indycar races than i have the f1 races recently,i can see why kevin would choose indycar,unlike f1 he would have a chance of winning in most of the indycar teams