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Q&A: Penske Racing -

Following news that 2008 IndyCar Series runner-up - and double Indy 500 winner - Helio Castroneves had been acquitted of six charges of tax evasion, Penske Racing held an impromptu press conference in Long Beach to explain the way forward as the Brazilian returns to the cockpit of the #3 machine.


MC:
To my far right, Ryan Briscoe, driver from Team Penske. Next to Ryan Briscoe, Tim Cindric, the president of Penske Racing. Next to him, Will Power from Team Penske. And then nearest me, Brian Barnhart, the president of Racing Operations for the IndyCar Series, Indy Racing League. We'll start off with Tim with a general statement and we'll take it from there.

Tim Cindric:
Obviously our being here today is all relative to the outcome of Helio's well‑publicised trial. And on behalf of Roger and our entire organisation, we're ecstatic with the outcome. It's been a very, very difficult time for all of us. Obviously in particular he and his family. So we're very, very excited to know that he can go on with his life, business as usual. And as hard as that is to say about Helio, in particular.

But his usual business is sometimes a little different. And he adds a little bit of fun to everything we do. So we're certainly looking forward to having him back in the IndyCar Series and back as a driver of our organisation. We've made the provisions and the decision that he'll be in a car with us tomorrow. He'll be in the #3 car tomorrow.

And with that, we'll add an additional entry to the Long Beach race starting tomorrow morning. Will Power will be in the #12 Team Verizon Wireless car, and Will Power will also drive for Penske in the Indy 500 this year in the #12 Verizon Wireless entry.

So today our plans are to carry on business as usual. Helio will arrive this evening. No, I don't know an exact time. But he will arrive this evening. And we'll continue to prepare everything.

The next session, Will will continue in the #3 car, carry out the remainder of the day. And Brian, I'll let you talk a little bit how the rest of the weekend will go technically.

Brian Barnhart:
Great. Thanks, Tim. Obviously we couldn't be happier for Penske Racing, Helio and his family. We look forward to having Helio back on the grid here in Long Beach. Helio's played an integral part in the growth of the IndyCar Series, both on and off the racetrack the past few years and has an incredible legion of fans. He is a true star in every sense of the word. His infectious personality, popularity and success on the racetrack is truly welcomed back to the IndyCar Series.

As Tim mentioned, we've had some contingency plans in place, both at the St Pete event and the Long Beach event, not knowing the timing of how and when this was going to play out with regards to entries, licensing, driver physicals that kind of stuff, pit locations.



Related Pictures

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Will Power- Team Penske/Team Verizon Wireless   [pic credit: IRL/Jones]
Will Power, Mark Miles and Derrick Walker announce the addition of Boston to the 2016 IndyCar Series itinerary. (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, qualifies third fastest Sunday, May 17, 2015, and will start on the outside of the front row for the Verizon IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Pagenaud will be joined in the front row by by polestar Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet and Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet who qualified second fastest for the May 24 race. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, qualifies second-fastest Sunday, May 17, 2015, and will start in the middle of the front row for the Verizon IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Power will be joined in the front row by pole sitter Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet and Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet  who qualified third for the May 24 race. (Photo by Scott R. LePage/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates after qualifying fastest Sunday, May 17, 2015, winning the pole for the Verizon IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Dixon will be joined in the front row by Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet who qualified second fastest, and Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet  who qualified third for the May 24 race. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, qualifies fastest Sunday, May 17, 2015, winning the pole for the Verizon IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Dixon will be joined in the front row by Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet who qualified second fastest, and Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet  who qualified third for the May 24 race. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Simon Pagenaud on track in the Penske #22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Friday May 15 2015. (Photo by: Mike Harding for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud waits in the Penske #22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Friday May 15 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud climbs into the Penske #22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Friday May 15 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud leads Will Power at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Thursday May 14 2015. (Photo by: Mike Harding for IndyCar Media)
Will Power and Simon Pagenaud at practice at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Thursday May 14 2015. (Photo by: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves and Roger Penske waive to fans at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice on Wednesday May 13 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves speaks with Tim Cindric (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Will Power (right), driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V6 IndyCar, celebrates his victory with teammate Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V6 IndyCar Saturday, May 9, 2015, during the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Indianapolis on the road course of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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