IRL: Richmond: Team Penske race report

"I'm very happy with tonight's result, especially after last year's race (Castroneves finished 17th after contact on lap 8). My car handled well all night, it's just unfortunate that the rain came because I really think I had a car that could've...

"I'm very happy with tonight's result, especially after last year's race (Castroneves finished 17th after contact on lap 8). My car handled well all night, it's just unfortunate that the rain came because I really think I had a car that could've competed for the win. We started in tenth and made progress throughout the race. I moved up to third and on my second pit stop (on lap 133) I got out of the pits before Gil (de Ferran), which put me in second and I was able to stay with the leader (Dixon) throughout the rest of the race. Just before the rain came he was coming up on traffic so it could've been an interesting finish. It would've been nice to win, but it's still great to have finished second, especially after a disappointing race in Pikes Peak two weeks ago (Castroneves finished twelfth). We were able to earn some valuable points and move closer to the the lead (Castroneves is third in the point standings, just 40 out of first place)."

-- Helio Castroneves, Marlboro Team Penske, 2001 & 2002 Indianapolis 500 Winner
-- #3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota
-- Second place finish
-- Third in the Championship point standings with 207 points

"Overall, it was a positive result for Marlboro Team Penske (de Ferran finished third; teammate Helio Castroneves finished second). I had a good start and was able to jump from sixth to third on the first lap. From there, I was biding my time and waiting for the leaders to catch traffic. I was able to get by Tony (Kanaan) and move into second place and started to close the gap with Scott (Dixon). We had a good first pit stop (lap 61) and got settled in for the second stint. The car was running well and I was able to maintain second place. On our second pit stop (lap 133), Helio was able to get by me. From that point on, we were running flat out, driving a qualifying pace for the rest of the race. We knew rain was coming so we were going all out. My car was more consistent this year than last and the Toyota engine was really good. Now we need to shift our focus to Kansas and keep putting points on the board."

-- Gil de Ferran, Marlboro Team Penske, 2003 Indianapolis 500 Winner and Two-Time CART Champion
-- #6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota
-- Third place finish
-- Fourth in the Championship point standings with 202 points

-mtp-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran
Teams Team Penske