Castroneves Leads Team Penske Charge at Miami

March 30, 2008

Homestead, Fla. (March 29,2008) -- Team Penske enjoyed the good and endured the bad of racing Saturday night at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Helio Castroneves battled traffic to finish fourth in the GAINSCO Auto Insurance Indy 300, the season opener for the IndyCar Series. His new teammate, Ryan Briscoe, was collected by a spinning race car and crashed, eventually finishing 19th.

Castroneves said he could have done better but was pleased with his showing.

“The Team Penske car handled really well tonight,” he said. “But we just didn’t have the speed that the top few guys had. Thankfully, we were able to stay out of trouble and bring home a solid fourth-place finish. The championship is our ultimate goal, and we were able to score some valuable points.”

Briscoe’s luck went the opposite way. On the 123rd lap of the 200-lap race, he was caught in the crash of Milka Duno’s car. At the time, Briscoe was racing solidly among the lead group.

“I saw that she had her air taken off her and she slowed out there,” Briscoe said. “Unfortunately, I was already up the racetrack and had nowhere to go, so she collected me. It’s a shame because my first race with Team Penske was going so smoothly.”

The 2008 campaign resumes next week with the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, which Castroneves has won the past two seasons.