There’s a very convincing looking fake Twitter account claiming that everybody’s favorite series-hopping Formula One driver Fernando Alonso is confirmed to drive for Toyota at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. But don’t get your hopes up just yet—it’s an extremely well done gag.
Alonso tested Toyota’s TS 050 Le Mans prototype at the end of the season, so we know there’s interest there. A user under the Twitter name Toyota_WEC copied just about everything graphics, look and hashtag wise from the real Toyota_Hybrid, tmgofficial and Toyota_GR accounts that cover Toyota’s World Endurance Championship team and let the joke fly. Yet those accounts as well as Alonso’s alo_official Twitter had zero to say on this “official” confirmation.
Of the pranks I’ve seen on the internet, this one is extremely well done! They’ve been on the site since 2016. Even the Spanish text makes sense, given that Alonso’s Spanish fanbase followed his Indianapolis 500 run en masse. And of course, two of Toyota Motorsport’s real Twitter accounts aren’t even verified anyway, so the lack of a blue check mark doesn’t even set off an alarm.
Yet it all starts to look fishy when you realize that Toyota_WEC’s older tweets certainly don’t look like the Toyota WEC team’s doing.
The account later admitted that this was all for Fools’ Day in Spain. Fools’ Day (also known as Día de los Santos Inocentes) is like our April Fools’ Day except we English-speaking types aren’t getting bombarded with bad #brand attempts at being funny for this one. (Thank goodness.)
Jalopnik reached out to the actual press contact for the Toyota WEC team and initially got an auto-response in return, as he’s out for the holidays until January 3. Soon afterwards, Toyota’s representative confirmed, “It’s a fake account and a false statement.” Sorry, folks: it’s a fake.