Penske puzzled by Ganassi’s Honda switch

Roger Penske, whose team scooped 10 wins in the 16-race Verizon IndyCar Series this year, has said he’s surprised by Chip Ganassi switching his team to Honda power for 2017.

Penske puzzled by Ganassi’s Honda switch
Roger Penske
Chip Ganassi, Chip Ganassi Racing
Winner Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
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Ganassi announced in October 2013, on the eve of Scott Dixon’s third IndyCar title, it would be switching from the Honda Performance Development units to the Ilmor-built Chevrolets. Two years later Dixon clinched his fourth crown with Ganassi. Yet after just three years wearing the Bowtie, the 11-time IndyCar champion team is switching back to HPD.

Penske told Motorsport.com: “I don’t know why he did that. There could have been some remuneration that looked pretty decent as to why he moved. [But] he’s been a great partner of ours on the Chevrolet side.

“It’s great for Honda. It gives them Andretti [Autosport], it gives them Rahal [Letterman Lanigan Racing], and now Ganassi. That’s going to be a tough one.”

However, Penske, who was crucial in luring Chevrolet back to IndyCar when the regulations for the 2.2-liter turbo engines were introduced for the 2012 season, said he was confident in remaining with the American brand.

“We’ve been with Chevy from the very beginning, and you can see the results this year – 1-2-3 in the championship.

“With Josef Newgarden coming on board – and he finished fourth – we really feel good about the car and the product and certainly the team of drivers we have.”

Additional reporting: Andrew van Leeuwen

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