Will Power Leads Team Penske in Race One in Houston

October 6, 2013


Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston (IZOD IndyCar Series)
“Double Down in H-Town” Doubleheader Race 1
Reliant Park (1.7-mile street circuit)
Saturday, October 5, 2013


No. 3 Shell V-Power Pennzoil Ultra Dallara/Chevrolet
Driven By Helio Castroneves

Starting Position: 21
Finishing Position: 18
Staus: Running
Current Series Position: 1

No. 12 Verizon Dallara/Chevrolet
Driven By Will Power

Starting Position: 2
Finishing Position: 12
Staus: Running
Current Series Position: 8


No. 3 Shell V-Power Pennzoil Ultra Dallara/Chevrolet
Driven By Helio Castroneves

· In the first of two races on the 1.7-mile street circuit around Houston’s Reliant Park, Helio Castroneves began Saturday’s race from the 21st spot, his worst starting position in 17 IZOD IndyCar Series races this season.

· Castroneves drove the No. 3 Shell V-Power Pennzoil Ultra Chevrolet up to 18th place by Lap 11.

· On Lap 21, Castroneves radioed to his team that he was not able to shift the No. 3 car and he visited pit lane one lap later. The Shell-Pennzoil crew displayed great teamwork by replacing several elements of the car’s gearbox as they got Castroneves back on track within 10 laps. During the repairs, Castroneves fell to 20th in the running order.

· As he continued to battle for points in order to maintain his lead in the series championship standings, Castroneves found himself off track on two occasions. He was able to get back underway in both minor incidents and he didn’t lose any positions as a result.

· Castroneves continued to post fast lap times throughout the closing stages of the race despite running several laps down to the leaders.

· With an 18th-place finish, Castroneves saw his impressive streak of 12 consecutive top-10 finishes come to an end.

· With Scott Dixon’s win on Saturday, Castroneves’ lead in the series championship battle has been trimmed to eight points over Dixon with just two races remaining in the season.




“Obviously that was a tough finish for the Shell-Pennzoil team. Early in the race, the car was bottoming out in a couple of places and then I just couldn’t shift. It was a helluva job by the Shell and Pennzoil guys to figure out the problem and get me back on track. It’s tough but it’s something that’s out of our control. I tried to earn as many points as I could and really just focus on making the car better so we can be ready for tomorrow. On the positive side, we still have the lead in the championship and I think we will be in good shape for Sunday. We need to have a good qualifying and bounce back with a strong race tomorrow.”


No. 12 Verizon Dallara/Chevrolet
Driven By Will Power

· Will Power posted the fastest time in the first group of qualifiers on Saturday, which helped him secure one championship point and a front-row starting spot for the race, starting second overall.

· After a caution for a multi-car accident following the standing start of the race, Power ran second early on. He took over the race lead when polesitter Takuma Sato headed to pit lane on Lap 7.

· Power led for the next 31 laps until he made his first stop of the day on Lap 37.

· For the next 25 laps, Power ran in second place behind Scott Dixon at the physical street circuit.

· In the key sequence of the race for Power, Dixon headed to pit lane and just as Power was about to pit, a yellow caution flag was displayed and the pits were closed by race officials. Power was forced to remain on track and he reclaimed the lead, as he paced the field for the next nine laps.

· Power eventually pitted on Lap 73 but when he returned to the track he lost position as he ran in 11th place.

· Over the final 15 laps, Power fought hard but he took the checkered flag in 12th place.

· Continuing a tough season for the three-time series road course champion, Saturday’s result marked Power’s eighth finish outside the top 10 in nine street course races in 2013.

· Power improved to eighth in the series standings with Saturday’s result.




“It was very disappointing with not being able to keep the lead in the second half of the race.  The Verizon Team Penske Chevy ran well and we were in a decent position. Obviously that yellow flag was good for (Scott) Dixon in the points. It ruined our day and a few other people’s as well. We know we have a strong car here in Houston and we will give it a go in tomorrow's second race and hope for a better finish.”