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O'Ward and McLaren agree to new multi-year deal

Written by Dan Jones

Credit: Joe Skibinski

Pato O'Ward will remain in the papaya colours of Arrow McLaren for several more years to come after him and the team announced a contract extension ahead of the NTT IndyCar Series season opener on the Streets of St. Petersburg on March 10, with O'Ward's new deal expected to take him to the end of the 2027 season.

The Mexican signed for the team in 2020, since picking up four wins with the team, and 16 podiums across his four-year stint, but today's announcement means O'Ward's expected tenure with the team will reach at least eight seasons.

O'Ward stated: "I couldn’t be more excited to sign this deal with the team. I have to thank Zak and Gavin, the partners and all who were involved in making this happen, especially before the NTT INDYCAR SERIES season starts so we can focus on racing and winning. McLaren has become home for me, and I am proud that I’ll be racing in papaya for a few more years at least."

The 24-year-old will continue to balance his IndyCar commitments with an F1 reserve role, after the McLaren F1 team picked up the Mexican after the sudden departure of Alex Palou, as well as O'Ward being granted a superlicense for coming fourth in the 2023 standings.

O'Ward will continue to line-up alongside Alexander Rossi in 2024, with David Malukas joining the team, replacing the outgoing Felix Rosenqvist. However, after Malukas suffered an injury in pre-season, Arrow McLaren are expected to announce a replacement for Malukas to race on the Streets of St. Petersburg in due course. Malukas' injury has meant O'Ward received an additional day of testing at the recent tests at Sebring International Raceway.

Arrow McLaren team principal, Gavin Ward went on to say: "This is a big day for the team and for Pato. It’s been great to see Pato and the team grow together. We’re thrilled to continue racing with him and I look forward to showing the racing world what we can achieve as a group. Having this done and dusted before the start of the season means the No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet crew can go into the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg free from distraction and with one goal in mind: to execute each race weekend to the fullest of our potential."

O'Ward will remain Arrow McLaren's figurehead for many more years to come after this announcement, the team continue to grow in stature on and off the track, and with a future continued to be locked in together, O'Ward and Arrow McLaren remain an exciting prospect for the future.


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