IRL: Kentucky: Team Penske race report

SPARTA, Ky. (Aug. 11, 2007) -- Team Penske experienced a disappointing weekend at Kentucky Speedway with an ill-handling race car handing Helio Castroneves a ninth-place finish in Saturday's Meijer Indy 300, and an early race crash relegating Sam...

SPARTA, Ky. (Aug. 11, 2007) -- Team Penske experienced a disappointing weekend at Kentucky Speedway with an ill-handling race car handing Helio Castroneves a ninth-place finish in Saturday's Meijer Indy 300, and an early race crash relegating Sam Hornish Jr. to 18th.

With three races remaining in the 2007 IndyCar Series season, the performances cost both Penske drivers in the standings. Hornish remained fifth, but dropped 139 points behind leader Dario Franchitti. Castroneves maintained sixth, but dropped 160 points off the lead.

Castroneves, who started 13th, raced among the lead-lap cars before a mechanical problem forced the No. 3 Team Penske Honda/Dallara back in the field.

"We were running in the top five after our first pit stop and then something happened with the car," Castroneves said. "It's a shame because we started the race strong and the Team Penske car was handling well. The good news is that we still finished in the top 10. I have to hand it to my guys, they did a fantastic job in the pits all day and at least we were able to get some points out of it."

Early in the race, Hornish got caught in the turbulence created by another car, sending the No. 6 Team Penske Honda/Dallara into a spin.

"We had a good car and moved up real quick on the start," said Hornish, who started seventh. "It was unfortunate. Dario picked the outside line going around. I tried to get to the other side, just came out and took the air off of the car. Unfortunately, as soon as you get to the other side, it puts a whole bunch of downforce on the front and the back end came around. There was nothing we could really do about that at that time."

The series takes a weekend off, then resumes Aug. 26 at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.

-credit: tp

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Dario Franchitti , Sam Hornish Jr.
Teams Team Penske