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McLaren name Alex Palou reserve driver for F1 team

ELKHART LAKE, WI - JUNE 19: NTT Indy Car series driver Alex Palou stands in his pit box during qualifications for the REV Group Grand Prix on June 19, 2021 at Road America at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. (Photo by Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

(AP) — Alex Palou has been named a Formula One reserve driver for McLaren Racing.

The Spaniard won the 2021 IndyCar championship for Chip Ganassi Racing and last July said he was declining to return to Ganassi next year and instead would drive for McLaren.

Ganassi held an option on 2023 for Palou, who wanted to move to McLaren for a shot at motorsports’ highest level.

The fight for the driver dragged into September through mediation. There it was decided that Palou would finish his contract and also be allowed to do F1 opportunities with McLaren. He will work with the F1 team whenever it doesn’t conflict with his final season with Ganassi in IndyCar.