Castroneves Quickest for Team Chevy, Penske on Belle Isle

DETROIT (June 2, 2017) – Helio Castroneves set the fastest lap on Team Chevy’s home turf during the opening practice day for the Chevrolet Dual in Detroit – part of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix weekend. Castroneves, the championship leader in the Verizon IndyCar Series, posted a lap of 1:15.1511 (112.573 mph) in the No. 3 Hitachi Chevrolet IndyCar for Team Penske.

Castroneves is a three-time winner on Belle Isle, the site of his first career IndyCar victory in 2000. He led a group of four Chevrolet 2.2-liter, twin-turbo, V6-powered entries in the top-10 Friday.

“The Hitachi Chevy IndyCar looks really strong here,” said Castroneves, who set his quick time in the second of Friday’s two official practice sessions. “We had a good, solid car out of the truck. Along with my teammates, we’re working together so tomorrow we can repeat what we did this morning. I have a very special feeling for this place. Plus my boss (Roger Penske)… his home is here and his work is here. It’s great. This is my 18th year with Team Penske, and I’ve become good friends with a lot of his people. It’s great to have a family in Detroit cheering for you. Plus Detroit has always been nice to me.””

Simon Pagenaud, second in Verizon IndyCar Series points, was fourth-quickest Friday in the No. 1 DXC Technology Chevrolet IndyCar at 1:15.4577 (112.116 mph). Josef Newgarden in the No. 2 hum by Verizon Chevrolet for Team Penske was sixth-fastest with Team Penske’s Will Power eighth in the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet.

Of the four quickest Team Chevy drivers, Castroneves and Pagenaud set their best times Friday afternoon with Newgarden and Power quicker in the morning session.

Qualifying for the first race of the Dual in Detroit is set for 10:05 a.m. ET on Saturday with the race scheduled for 3:50 p.m. ET.

DRIVER POST PRACTICE QUOTES:

Helio Castroneves, No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet: “The Hitachi Chevy IndyCar looks really strong here.  We had a good, solid car out of the truck. Along with my teammates, we’re working together so tomorrow we can repeat what we did this morning. I have a very special feeling for this place. Plus my boss (Roger Penske)… his home is here and his work is here. It’s great. This is my 18th year with Team Penske, and I’ve become good friends with a lot of his people. It’s great to have a family in Detroit cheering for you. Plus Detroit has always been nice to me.”

 

JR Hildebrand, No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet:  “My last run here was in 2012, I’ve been here a few times since then watching the race but it’s nice to be back on track! We were able to hit the ground running today. We have plenty to work on overnight, but to be in the Top 10 in the second practice, we’re definitely making improvements. I’ve got a lot of things to work on here this weekend, but I feel pretty good about everything so far. We’re just try to continue to make progress as the weekend goes along and stay out of trouble while we’re doing it.”

Conor Daly, No. 4 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet: “We made some good progress in the second session. The tires are certainly interesting this weekend on how the reds and blacks work or vice versa. I think we learned some good things today. We’re almost on the verge of being in the top 10 which is nice. We just have to continue to chip away at it.”

Spencer Pigot, No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet:  “It’s nice to be back with ECR this weekend in Detroit.  We had a decent first session and a bit of a messy second session on my part, so I’ll be trying to improve that for tomorrow. We also need to work on the balance but we have a good idea of what to do and I’m looking forward to qualifying tomorrow morning.”