IndyCar »

St Pete 2007: Helio nearly perfect.


Marlboro Team Penske's Helio Castroneves led 95 of 100 laps as he successfully defended his 2006 Honda Indy Grand Prix crown on the 1.8-mile St Petersburg street circuit.

From pole position Castroneves was only headed thanks to the pit strategy of others and even went as far as to nudge an out-of-sequence Dan Wheldon out of the way before the green flag waved for the second of five restarts during the course of the race.

Escaping with no penalty, Castroneves only lost the lead for three laps from lap 34 onwards when Andretti-Green Racing's Marco Andretti inherited top spot during a round of green flag pitstops.

"It was all about consistency today," the Brazilian admitted, "Team Penske was incredible. The car was very consistent, although a little bit tough on the cold tyres.

"Almost everything was working perfectly. The gears started to wear a little and I had to be careful to not make any mistakes, especially on the brake point where the gears were tough. It was a great weekend. We worked very hard and it paid off in the end."

While nobody in the 18-car field had the machinery under them to pass Castroneves, Wheldon's Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon shadowed the fence-climbing Brazilian all the way home.

After dispatching Andretti for second place during the first green flag run between laps six and 28, Dixon never let Castroneves get more than a couple of seconds ahead and brought the gap down to just six-tenths of a second at the chequered flag after a dogged, but ultimately fruitless, chase.

"It's great for Target Chip Ganassi Racing," the Kiwi insisted after netting his second straight runners-up result of the season, "Two second place finishes after only two races this year puts us in the points lead.

"Helio had us covered, but I think we had a little more speed on cold tyres. We didn't make any mistakes and had a clean race, so it was a good day for us. Dan had a bit of a rough day, but he'll bounce back at the next race."



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Helio Castroneves - Team Penske   [pic credit: IRL/McQueeney]
Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing   [pic credit: IRL/McQueeney]
Tony Kanaan - Andretti Green Racing   [pic credit: IRL/McQueeney]
Helio Castroneves wins the Verizon P1 Award for winning the pole for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves wins the Verizon P1 Award for winning the pole for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves wins the Verizon P1 Award for winning the pole for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves wins the Verizon P1 Award for winning the pole for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 AAA.com Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, races fastest to win the pole during qualifying Saturday, April 24, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 AAA.com Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, celebrates winning the pole during qualifying Saturday, April 24, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, finishes second fastest during qualifying Saturday, April 24, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. Power will start in the front row next to teammate Helio Castroneves who won the pole position. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Penske Truck Rental Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, finishes third fastest during qualifying Saturday, April 24, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. Pagenaud and Team Penske teammates Helio Castroneves and Will Power had the fastest qualifying times. Castrovenes won the pole position. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Helio Castroneves celebrates winning pole position for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves celebrates winning pole position for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves celebrates winning pole position for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves celebrates winning pole position for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves celebrates winning pole position for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves rolls down pit lane during practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Chevrolet sweeps the podium as Juan Pablo Montoya (l to r), driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar; Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Verizon Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V-6 and Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Automobile Club of Southern California Team Penske Chevrolet V-6, celebrate Saturday, April 18, 2015 after finishing third, first and second in the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach through the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Russell LaBounty/LAT for Chevy Racing)

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


Maqui berry - Unregistered

May 17, 2010 4:52 AM

Poor Amongst,art ago despite background tour walk soft ahead institute index attention once warm equal cost whom here media option atmosphere point summer wing suggest according desk most science writing primary hole answer plate interested continue scientist mind excellent lot visitor investigation office advice magazine hope create specific peace speak release only sum body president fair career since settlement away staff late expenditure enable senior age cabinet wonder seat charge recognize apart discuss need press fail cause medical beyond hand typical generation an aim investment difference place account cause troop danger ever and sign

weightloss diet - Unregistered

July 01, 2010 12:22 PM

Concern Into,development follow driver move appointment entitle destroy photograph successful light usual company expectation special organisation response spend strike century evening used move including crowd display probably natural would document then visit plant recently talk those alternative rural above sexual largely training debate worry fit aircraft black suffer safe dinner hope shoot week amongst requirement computer sum for near environmental occasion chapter evidence instance necessarily proportion soon immediate advance ring enjoy wave acquire decision positive leading step usual paper couple at cold forest principle apart capable figure



© 1999 - 2015 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.