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Q&A: Penske Racing -

What we're going to do now with Helio switching to the #3 car, he'll remain in the #3 car pit location. And the #12 car entry, which is now the Will Power entry, will be added to the pits as a pit entry end of the pit lane. And the tyres that Will uses today will go with him with our tyre restrictions, which, just from a logistical standpoint, we get six primary sets of Firestone and then three alternate reds.

So the tyres that Will uses today go with him to the #12 car. Helio has a full allotment of nine sets beginning in the #3 car tomorrow. As I talked about the pit locations, that type of deal. And the one thing that I'll probably make a couple of concessions on, we have split groups in practice tomorrow for two thirty‑minute sessions. I'll allow Helio to run both sessions in the morning since he's not been in a car since October.

I will give Will, who has drawn the red chip that puts him in Group Two, a couple of shakedown laps in the #12 car since it's the first time it's been on the track in the first session. Then he'll slide back to Group Two. And then both are in Group Two for qualifying. We did a contingency draw for Helio for the segment one of qualifying and he's in the second group from that standpoint as well.

So good communication with him and everyone at Team Penske allowing for this to happen, not knowing the timing of it. And as I said, we're certainly happy to have Helio back and look forward to having Will in the car here for Long Beach and Indianapolis as well, as he's a big member of the family as well. It's nice to have the IndyCar family back together.

Ryan, let's start with you from a driver perspective and talk about the news with Helio.

Ryan Briscoe:
It's very exciting news for all of us here. And Helio especially. I look forward to having him back, working with him. We really built a strong relationship last year. So really excited to continue that going forward. And as far as it goes for Will, he's sort of in similar shoes as I was a couple years ago and got the opportunity with Penske Racing to run the Indy 500. And it's just a huge opportunity for him. He's done a great job for us so far this year. Really impressed us all. And who knows where that could lead him in the future. But really good news today. Happy for Helio.

Will, your perspective.

Will Power:
I'm very happy for Helio and his family. I couldn't imagine what it was like going through that, especially how much success he's had in his career. But for me I'm really excited to be driving the Verizon Wireless #12 car and also in the Indy 500. So this is a great opportunity for me. This team's made me feel very welcome. It's a first‑class team. I really love working with these guys, and you never know what can happen in the future.

We're going to open it up to questions.

Tim, can you talk a little bit about adding the third car, how tough that's going to be? You guys have done it before. But not for a while. And a little bit about is Will going to have any other opportunities this year with the team? Is there any possibility that he might have other rides this year?

Sure. Sure. Yeah, without a doubt. You know with our organization, we haven't run three cars for quite a while. And to be able to do that, I can't say enough about the preparation and the various contingencies our guys have been able to put together. It's been a bit of a mixed bag and really a moving yardstick here for quite a while.

I appreciate everything that the league has done for us, and really everybody in the garage area. I haven't heard one negative and anything but support for Helio in the community. And I can't say enough about Will and the approach that he's taken to, the tasks that he's had to deal with all the maybes and the what‑abouts and so forth. So our position is going to be to continue to take it a race at a time.

I don't want to speculate. There's a lot of things that can happen. I said that from the beginning. And Will will be the first one to tell you it wasn't until last night that he knew he was going to drive the Indy 500. So we talked about it from the beginning of this process, that that wasn't something that he knew going into it. So it's a big credit to him for him to take the approach that he's taken throughout the process.

Related Pictures

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Will Power- Team Penske/Team Verizon Wireless   [pic credit: IRL/Jones]
Will Power Texas
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Helio Castroneves 2017 Indy 500 practice
Ryan Hunter-Reay Indy 500 practice 2017
Will Power Indy 500 practice
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Josef Newgarden, Penske, IndyCar, Barber Motorsports Park
Simon Pagenaud (Team Penske) celebrates winning the 2016 IndyCar title with victory at Sonoma   [pic credit: Chris Owens]
Simon Pagenaud - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Owens]
Will Power - Team Penske
Will Power - Team Penske   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Jones]
Will Power - Team Penske   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Jones]
Will Power - Team Penske   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Simon Penske - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar media/Bret Kelley]
Simon Pagenaud - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Joe Skibinski]

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