With Fernando Alonso‘s race calendar lengthened after the Spaniard announced he would race a full season of the World Endurance Championship, with Toyota Gazoo Racing this season, there is a potential that one more race could be added to his calendar as Fuji Speedway may move their FIA WEC race date to avoid a clash.
The McLaren Renault Formula 1 Team driver is set to miss the 6 Hours of Fuji, Toyota’s home race, due to a clash with the United States Grand Prix. However, it was rumoured yesterday that the Japanese circuit may move their race date so that the clash is avoided and Alonso can partake in all five WEC races this year.
The race date has already been moved once as it’s original date clashed with the Petit Le Mans endurance race in America. With the change in Toyota’s LMP1 line-up, it is being considered to move back to the original date and clash with Petit Le Mans rather than the Formula 1 US Grand Prix.
As Toyota pays for the 6-hour endurance race to be held at Fuji, they hold a lot of power in deciding which date the race shall take place on. If they want their new star at their home race, the likelihood is that the race date will be moved.
McLaren have given Alonso the green light to race in all the WEC rounds this season (2018/19) but have made it clear that if F1 and WEC clash the Spaniard’s priority will be to F1.
A reschedule would be beneficial to Toyota as Alonso generates such a hype at the moment, crowds would easily be pulled to the event because of his presence. It also works in Alonso’s favour; if the car he will share with Sebastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima is fighting for the championship he will not be able to win it if he misses a round of racing.