By: Spencer Neff
March 9, 2020 | 8:34 AM
The latest step in a career that spans multiple disciplines and nations, Alex Palou is one of three rookies currently confirmed for a full-season NTT IndyCar Series ride. For the native of Sant Antoni de Villamajor, Spain, his racing career began at the age of six with his debut in karting.
In 2012, Palou reached the pinnacle of his karting career when he won the WSK Euro Series title. By 2014, the young Spaniard had made the transition to open-wheel racing.
Driving for Campos Racing, Palou made a combined 22 starts across Euroformula Open and Spanish Formula 3. In his time there, Palou won a combined four races and finished second and third in the series standings. Before the year ended, Palou also finished 16th at the famed Macau Grand Prix and started four events in Formula 4.
For 2015, Palou made the switch to Formula 3 with Campos. Over the next two seasons, they entered 36 races together. At the 2015 finale, Palou was victorious in the sprint race on the Yas Marina Circuit.
By 2017, Palou had moved on to Japan to compete in the Japanese Formula 3 Championship. On the strength of three race wins and five poles in 20 events, he finished the season third in the points standings.
During the year, Palou also won a race at the famed Nurburgring while running part-time in Formula V8 3.5. Also in Palou’s busy 2017 schedule were an 11th-place run at Macau and four starts in Formula 2,
Returning to Europe for 2018, Palou headed to the Formula 3 European Championship as part of HiTech Racing. With seven podium finishes, Palou was able to claim seventh in the final points standings. He also entered the Macau Grand Prix for a third time but did not finish the race.
Finding New Roads
For the third straight season, Palou’s racing path would take him overseas. In 2019, he made a return to Japan. With TCS Nakajima Racing, Palou finished third in Super Formula, winning at Fuji. While driving for McLaren Customer Racing, he earned a pole at Motegi and a second-place finish at Autopolis.
In July, Dale Coyne Racing invited Palou for a test at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, and on December 19, the team formally confirmed Palou for a full-season as Team Goh also announced they would partner with DCR.
“I’m very excited about coming to America to race Indy cars,” Palou exclaimed in the press release.
“I’m grateful for all that have helped me get to this point of my career and especially Dale Coyne and Mr. Kazumichi Goh for giving me this opportunity.”
In his first major test in the No. 55 Dallara-Honda, Palou turned the ninth-fastest lap time at the Circuit of the Americas Open Test on February 12.
“It was a lot of fun,” Palou exclaimed. “We tested a lot of stuff and we learned a lot. I also got confident with the car and the team. It was a very productive test. I think it’s the start of a good year.”
On March 15, Palou will look to make his mark in his NTT IndyCar Series debut at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
Header Image from Alex Palou social.