Castroneves predicts “fun” high tire degradation race at Sonoma

Helio Castroneves is predicting “an exciting race for the fans” at Sonoma next weekend, as he expects drivers will struggle to manage their tires for a full fuel stint.

Castroneves predicts “fun” high tire degradation race at Sonoma
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Takuma Sato, A.J. Foyt Enterprises Honda, Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Third place Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet

The Brazilian, who can’t win the 2016 championship but is a strong contender for third place, said: “The tires are degrading and that’s fine. We have to learn to look after them, and that’s interesting for us, a good challenge.

“And it’s a challenge that makes exciting races, with order changes and different strategies going on.”

Asked if it would be similar to the IndyCar race here back in 2010, when the tires proverbially fell off a cliff in terms of grip around the 18-lap mark, Castroneves said: “Exactly. That’s exactly how I think it will be… And the fans are going to love it.

“If we have no yellows – and we have had a lot of races the past couple seasons without yellows or not many – you’re going to see a lot teams and drivers trying different strategies to get to the front and get track position and clean air.

“That’s a plus for the race. And remember, we only tried blacks [harder-compound tires]. We don’t have an idea about how the reds will be. They probably will degrade even faster, but while they last they will be faster. Probably a lot faster.”

Castroneves, who was top of the times in the morning session, said: “The #3 car was very good right out of the box. The others [teammates Will Power, Simon Pagenaud and Juan Pablo Montoya] started off all doing different things, but our setup prevailed and they liked the setup we had.

“So that proved we were going in the right direction. In the afternoon, Will was fastest of us by a few hundredths, and then Montoya, myself and Simon, all within the same tenth. Very close and fast.

“It’s nice to have that speed there, but it’s tires and strategy that will decide how the race goes for us or against us.”

 

 

 

shares
comments
Kanaan set for another season at Ganassi
Previous article

Kanaan set for another season at Ganassi

Next article

Being part of an IndyCar pit stop crew

Being part of an IndyCar pit stop crew
Load comments
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win Prime

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win

Saturday, Oct. 16th, marks the 10th anniversary Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500.

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Prime

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Jack Harvey’s move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate, but their combined strength could prove golden, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 15, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Prime

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong résumé and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear. By David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star Prime

2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star

Alex Palou has captured Chip Ganassi Racing's 14th IndyCar drivers' championship, and in truly stellar manner. David Malsher-Lopez explains what made the Palou-Ganassi combo so potent so soon.

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Prime

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar
Sep 24, 2021
IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021
IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet Prime

IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet

The ace 20-somethings in IndyCar have risen to become title contenders, but the best of the series veterans are digging deep and responding – and will continue to do so over the next couple of years, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Aug 20, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021