McLaren has announced plans for a major new headquarters for its IndyCar programme.
The Formula 1 squad took majority ownership of the Arrow McLaren SP IndyCar team last year, having originally gone into partnership with what was previously the Schmidt Peterson team ahead of the 2020 season.
It currently operates out of Schmidt’s original premises in Indianapolis, but later this year it will begin building its new facility north of the city in Whitestown.
“Part of our long-term strategy for Arrow McLaren SP is to relocate the team to a new facility fit for the future,” said McLaren CEO Zak Brown.
“This is both a clear sign of our commitment to IndyCar and also to the community of Whitestown, the City of Indianapolis, and the state of Indiana, which has been the home of IndyCar since the sport began.”
Arrow McLaren SP will expand from its current two-car full-time line-up to three in 2023.
It is expected to announce in the next month that it has signed 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi from Andretti Autosport to join Pato O’Ward, with O’Ward’s current team-mate Felix Rosenqvist yet to secure a 2023 contract.
“Reflecting McLaren’s commitment to the importance of IndyCar and North America, the new building will more than double the size of the current facility, with over 97,000 square feet of space,” said a McLaren statement announcing its construction plans.
“The new facility will also provide a significant number of additional, high quality jobs, across a range of categories.
“Sustainability will be a core focus for the design and construction from the outset, with ecological features focused on the well-being of our people.”
Arrow McLaren SP is not the only IndyCar team currently engaged in such a project, with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s new facility due to open this year.
Construction of Arrow McLaren SP’s new base will begin in August or September, with an estimated 18 months build time.
McLaren’s 2022 IndyCar season got off to a tough start, amid discord with lead driver O’Ward over his new contract and initial poor results.
O’Ward’s new deal is now agreed in all but the final details and he won the Barber Motorsports Park round at the start of May to get his title bid going properly – though he remains only seventh in the championship, 44 points behind leader Will Power.
O’Ward and Rosenqvist start seventh and eighth for this weekend’s Indy 500, with Juan Pablo Montoya 30th on the grid in an additional Arrow McLaren SP entry.
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