Helio Castroneves Breaks Iowa Speedway Winless Streak for Team Penske

Helio Castroneves celebrating with fans in Casey’s General Store’s Victory Lane (Photo Credit Jennifer Coleman Photography)

Iowa Speedway to host final race weekend of 2017 July 28-29

NEWTON, Iowa (July 9, 2017) – Will Power gave Team Penske its third consecutive pole at Iowa Speedway during qualifying but it was Helio Castroneves who made team history by winning the 11th running of the Verizon IndyCar Series Iowa Corn 300. Castroneves’ visit to Casey’s General Store’s Victory Lane gave Team Penske its 192nd INDYCAR win – most all time – and its first at Iowa Speedway.

“We’ve been close (to winning) so many times, and finally luck was on our side,” Castroneves said. “We’ve been working so hard together, but the Hitachi Chevy was on rails. We had a little bit of an issue in the beginning, but after we set up the car it was great. What a great finish. It’s just like the first time.”

Castroneves ended a three-year victory drought today, winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway to secure the 30th win of his 20-year Indy car career.

Castroneves led 217 of the 300 laps at The Fastest Short Track on the Planet and crossed the finish line 3.9647 seconds ahead of JR Hildebrand. The triumph is Castroneves’ first in the Verizon IndyCar Series in 54 races, since he won the first race of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix on June 1, 2014.

It also helped the 42-year-old Brazilian unofficially close within eight points of Scott Dixon for the championship lead after 11 of 17 races. Castroneves has never won a season championship.

“It’s great momentum to carry on for the championship, and this is exactly what we need,” said Castroneves. “Now we’re going to Toronto to another place that we run really well in the past, and I am really looking forward to that one.”

Hildebrand, in the No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet for Ed Carpenter Racing, equaled his career-best finish first accomplished at the Indianapolis 500 in 2011. Ryan Hunter-Reay, a three-time winner at Iowa Speedway, finished third.

By leading the 217 laps, Castroneves passed Al Unser for fourth on the career laps-led chart with 5,947. With 30 wins, Castroneves broke a tie with Rick Mears for 12th place on the all-time list.

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Posted by on Jul 9 2017. Filed under Local News, Professional Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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