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Alonso praises McLaren for letting him venture beyond F1

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Fernando Alonso says McLaren has awarded him a luxury no other F1 team would allow him in the past as the Spaniard continues to broaden his motorsport horizons.

After tacking his first Indy 500 earlier this year, with McLaren very much the promoter of trip to the Brickyard, Alonso will race in the 2018 Daytona 24 Hours with Zak Brown's United Autosports outfit.

The endeavor is seen as part of Alonso's preparation for a shot at Le Mans, perhaps later this year, and as part of his quest to venture outside the world of Grand Prix racing.

"I want to be the best driver in the world," he said.

"To do that you need to compete in different series, you need to win in different cars, and sometimes you need to go out of this small world of F1.

"This is smaller than motorsport, motorsport is more than F1. My plans for motorsport are much greater than everyone will think.

"I've been trying this for eight or nine years now, and I could not succeed with any of the bosses that I had before.

"Zak understood that motorsport is bigger than what we think, and some of the experiences that we had in the Indy 500, some of the value that McLaren has now in the US thanks to that approach, it's a win-win situation for everyone."

With regard to Le Mans, Alonso has yet to determine how and with whom he shall eventually race in the endurance classic.

"There are things ongoing with different opportunities that are there, for Le Mans, for other series as well," he said.

"We'll try to make the best decision. I'm excited, and it's great to be back in the States for another race in January.

"In less than one year I will do Indy 500 and Daytona 24 Hours. It's a good opportunity to race in these iconic events.

"Obviously it's [my] first time in a prototype car, so it's a nice experience that will help me for the future as well, in whatever series I may compete.

"As with Indianapolis, it's a learning race, it's a challenge for myself.

"But there is no doubt that once when we'll be there, the victory will be on our heads, because we don't go to any race just to participate, we go to win it."

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