Iowa: Team Penske rain-out qualifying notes

Team Penske Drivers To Start In Top Five At Iowa Speedway After NEWTON, Iowa (June 21, 2008) - Team Penske's two cars will start among the top five Sunday for Iowa Corn Indy 250 after qualifying was rained out Saturday evening at Iowa Speedway.

Team Penske Drivers To Start In Top Five At Iowa Speedway After

NEWTON, Iowa (June 21, 2008) - Team Penske's two cars will start among the top five Sunday for Iowa Corn Indy 250 after qualifying was rained out Saturday evening at Iowa Speedway. Helio Castroneves and his No. 3 Team Penske Honda/Dallara will start on the front row based on his standing in the IndyCar Series championship. Meanwhile, Ryan Briscoe and the No. 6 Penske Honda/Dallara will start fifth.

"It's tough starting like this, but it's a payoff for the entire season," said Castroneves, who is second in the championship standings to Scott Dixon, who will start Sunday's race from the pole position. "I have a great race car and I'm just really excited for the race."

It will be the second time that Castroneves has started second at the 7/8-mile speedway. Last year, he led 59 laps but finished eighth. "We've been working hard all year, and now we get to start in the front row because of it," he said.

Briscoe, who had the fastest lap during one of Saturday's practice sessions before rain wiped out qualifying, has been strong in each of the last two races - winning at Milwaukee on June 1 and finishing third at Texas on June 7. This will be his first race at Iowa Speedway.

"This weekend has been a lot of fun so far and I've really enjoyed my first event at Iowa Speedway," Briscoe said. "We've been able to get a lot of practice in, and I think we're in great shape for tomorrow. It's a shame about qualifying, because I definitely feel we had a shot at the pole.

"We're still starting fifth, which isn't bad, so I think we'll be fine. We've been slowly working our way up the point standings, so tomorrow we're looking for a consistent run. I'm looking forward to the race, and hopefully we'll be able to bring the Team Penske car home with a good result."

Teams got in a full 3 ½ hours of practice Saturday without concerns about weather, which wiped out later portions of Friday's open test at Iowa Speedway. However, just minutes after qualifying began, a thunderstorm hit the track. Castroneves had a run at qualifying before the rain began but said his car was hard to handle.

"I actually saw some raindrops, but I told myself, 'No, that's dry,'" Castroneves said. "It's one of those situations where you don't want to be thinking anything bad, especially when it's so tough to stay flat around here."

The race will be telecast live in High Definition at 1 p.m. (EDT) by ABC-TV. A Spanish-language telecast of the race will be carried by ESPNDeportes. The race will also air live on the IMS Radio Network on XM Satellite Radio and at www.indycar.com.

-credit: tp

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Scott Dixon , Ryan Briscoe
Teams Team Penske