Back in July, Chip Ganassi Racing announced that it would be retaining Alex Palou, then reigning IndyCar champion, in its No. 10 car. After months of legal drama and social media intrigue that saw Palou announce his departure to the McLaren racing program, the dust has finally settled, and it’s back to status quo. Yep, Palou is sticking with CGR.
If you’re wondering what happened, here’s a quick refresher. On July 13, Chip Ganassi Racing put out a press release that announced it would be retaining Palou for the 2023 season. The release included a quote from Palou — and then all hell broke loose.
Palou used Twitter to dispute CGR’s claims. He stated that he wasn’t sticking with CGR; instead, he said he had signed with McLaren (though he didn’t specify what series he’d be running with the latter team). Further, Palou noted that the quote attributed to him in the press release was forged.
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Ganassi then took Palou to court, arguing that Palou had broken CGR’s contract, which expressly included an option for the team to retain Palou for 2023. Basically, that option would allow CGR the right to decide whether or not it wanted to keep Palou for an additional season — which meant that Palou technically shouldn’t have the ability to sign with another team until he was released to do so by CGR.
The exact details of both the contract and the lawsuit are unknown, but it appears to have been settled. Palou will remain with the No. 10 crew for an undoubtably awkward 2023 season. Meanwhile, McLaren’s IndyCar program has announced it will be retaining Felix Rosenqvist alongside current driver Pato O’Ward and new signee Alexander Rossi.
In Palou’s Twitter announcement that he’d be remaining with Chip Ganassi Racing, he noted that the team will be allowing him to pursue Formula 1 testing with McLaren. Where Palou will end up for 2024, though, is certain to give us some drama.