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IndyCar Indianapolis 500

Brown: Ilott on McLaren's "consideration list" for 2025 IndyCar drive

McLaren CEO Zak Brown has stated that Callum Ilott is in the running for a seat with his IndyCar team for next season.

Callum Ilott, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

The Briton has been called upon on multiple occasions by Arrow McLaren through the early part of the 2024 campaign, after losing his full-time seat with Juncos Hollinger Racing at the end of 2023, and will start 15th for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.

Alongside his programme for Porsche privateer Jota in the World Endurance Championship, taking the team's first win at Spa earlier this month alongside Will Stevens, he was called up for the IndyCar season-opener in St. Petersburg and the non-championship Thermal Club exhibition event when David Malukas was sidelined by wrist injuries sustained in a pre-season mountain biking incident.

WEC commitments allowed the team to take a look at reigning Formula 2 champion Theo Pourchaire for Long Beach and Barber, with the Frenchman now confirmed to return for all remaining events aside from the Indy 500.

Although IndyCar's centrepiece event is Ilott's last scheduled appearance for the team this year, Brown believes he has already done enough to merit consideration for next season.

Asked by Autosport if Ilott has done enough to be among the shortlist of candidates, Brown replied: “Yes. He did a really good job.

“We wanted to see him on an oval; plus Theo having never driven an oval, he's now done a test in St. Louis.

“We kind of felt like here's another way to evaluate. We were very happy with what we saw on the street race and road course. 

“Now, we want to see on the oval and also felt that was throwing Theo a bit much in the deep end. But yeah, Callum is definitely on our consideration list.”

Callum Ilott, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Callum Ilott, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Photo by: Phillip Abbott / Motorsport Images

However, Brown stressed that the team is not viewing it as a shootout between Ilott and Pourchaire for a seat at the team in 2025.

When pressed if the scenario is Pourchaire versus Ilott for one seat, Brown succinctly responded: ”Not necessarily.”

The combination of past contract drama with Alex Palou, who ultimately decided to U-turn on his impending exit from Chip Ganassi Racing, and McLaren's decision to split with Malukas has made it a challenge to solidify the driver line-up.

To that end, Pato O’Ward signed a multi-year extension over the offseason, but the status of his team-mate, Alexander Rossi, remains unknown. 

Brown expects to get the 2025 line-up sorted following the Indy 500.

“Now, it's like catch our breath, focus on Indy and turn our attention to what we're gonna do with our driver lineup after this race,” he added. 

“Those conversations will come real quickly. We've got a shortlist as you can imagine.”

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