IRL: Chicagoland: Team Penske race report

Hornish Places 3rd, Castroneves Takes 4th In Season Finale JOLIET, Ill. (Sept. 9, 2007) -- Team Penske finished third and fourth in the IndyCar Series season finale Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway, leaving Sam Hornish Jr. fifth in the point ...

Hornish Places 3rd, Castroneves Takes 4th In Season Finale

JOLIET, Ill. (Sept. 9, 2007) -- Team Penske finished third and fourth in the IndyCar Series season finale Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway, leaving Sam Hornish Jr. fifth in the point standings and Helio Castroneves sixth.

Hornish finished third after leading the most laps -- 90 of 200 -- in the No. 6 Team Penske Honda/Dallara. Castroneves was right behind his teammate in the No. 3 Team Penske Honda/Dallara.

Hornish was going for his 20th win in IndyCar Series competition, but finished behind Dario Franchitti, who won the race and the series championship, and Scott Dixon.

"I'm very disappointed we didn't get the win today," said Hornish, who was only one point out of fourth in the series standings. "I was hoping for No. 20. We definitely had the fastest car, and it's just unfortunate things ended up the way they did. I'm not sure how the leaders were able to save so much fuel, but it is what it is. Helio and I had the cars to beat out there and it's just a shame Team Penske didn't get the win and end the season on a high note."

Castroneves indicated a controversial decision about pit stops during a crash cost him a shot at victory, putting both he and Hornish a lap behind the first two cars.

"When the No. 4 car [Vitor Meira] hit the wall, there was a lot of confusion during the caution period about who would get waved around and whether the pits were open or closed," said Castroneves, who led 56 laps. "It's unfortunate that the race officials made the call that left only two cars on the lead lap. If it wasn't for this, I'm confident that either Sam or I would have come away with the win.

"Regardless of the outcome, I can't say enough about the crew. We definitely ended the season on a high note. The car was awesome and the pit stops were flawless. I guess we'll have to wait until next year and hope we can carry this momentum into the first race of the season."

-credit: tp

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Dario Franchitti , Scott Dixon , Vitor Meira
Teams Team Penske