McNish evaluates IRL alternatives

Ousted Renault test driver Allan McNish has admitted that he is looking at racing options outside of the grand prix paddock, including the IRL IndyCar Series, should he not be able to secure a drive to compete in the 2004 F1 World Championship

McNish evaluates IRL alternatives

The Scot, who has spent the year as test and reserve driver for the Renault F1 team, tested a Penske IRL IndyCar last winter and pin-pointed the Indianapolis 500 as one goal he has yet to achieve, in an interview in today's Daily Telegraph

"It has always been an ambition of mine to race in the Indianapolis 500 in front of half a million spectators," he said. "I've won the Le Mans 24 Hours, I've raced in the Monaco Grand Prix, and the Indy 500 is the last of the great theatres I have yet to appear in. That said, I feel I have some unfinished business in Formula 1."

But McNish will not try and stay in F1 at the cost of a competitive ride elsewhere and has ruled out competing in a team at the back of the grid just to make up the numbers.

"I would like to stay in F1 but only if the circumstances are right," he said. "You can choose to be there simply for the sake of being there even if you're not competitive, but I race to win, not because I find it fun to drive fast. I'd prefer to win in another category of racing rather than stay in F1 just for the glamour or whatever.

"Also, at this stage of my career I would be taking a big risk joining Minardi, for example, with the possibility of not moving up from there. There is no point being at the back of the grid just so you can say you're an F1 driver."

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