McLaren majority shareholder Mansour Ojjeh says that a works IndyCar operation remains a possibility in the future after the British marque confirmed its return to the Indianapolis 500 on Wednesday.

McLaren last raced in the Indy 500 in 1979, but confirmed that two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso will pilot an entry supported by Honda and Andretti Autosport in 2017, missing the Monaco Grand Prix in the process.

McLaren has history at the 500, winning the race in 1974 and 1976 with Johnny Rutherford, and Ojjeh is pleased to see his company making a return this year.

"Even though I've been a major shareholder and director of McLaren for more than 30 years, I arrived after our first IndyCar era had come to an end," Ojjeh said.

"Nonetheless, I've attended the Indy 500, and I came away hugely impressed by the scope and scale of this enormous and well-organised event, and the sheer enthusiasm of the hundreds of thousands of fans in attendance.

"I'm pleased and proud that we're about to embark on a new IndyCar era for McLaren, this time with Andretti Autosport and Honda."

While Alonso's entry to the 500 will be a one-off for 2017, Ojjeh said that the could not rule out a works IndyCar operation in the future as McLaren continues to evaluate all of its racing programmes.

"The Indy 500 is the only IndyCar race we'll be entering this year, but we may possibly repeat that in years to come and it's just possible that we may even run a full-works McLaren IndyCar operation at some point in the future. We'll see," Ojjeh said.

"Equally, we may potentially enter the Le Mans 24 Hours again some time - we won it outright in 1995 with our iconic McLaren F1 GTR - but to be clear we have absolutely no definite plans to do so at this stage."

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