Montoya confirms he won’t race in 2018 Indy 500

Team Penske’s Juan Pablo Montoya will not make a sixth Indianapolis 500 appearance in 2018, Motorsport.com has learned.

Montoya confirms he won’t race in 2018 Indy 500
#6 Acura Team Penske Acura DPi, P: Dane Cameron, Juan Pablo Montoya, Simon Pagenaud
Juan Pablo Montoya, Team Penske
Juan Pablo Montoya, BMW Williams FW23, Michael Schumacher, Ferrari F1 2001
#6 Acura Team Penske Acura DPi, P: Dane Cameron, Juan Pablo Montoya, Simon Pagenaud
#6 Acura Team Penske Acura DPi, P: Dane Cameron, Juan Pablo Montoya, Simon Pagenaud
Juan Pablo Montoya signs Justin Wilson poster
Juan Pablo Montoya of Team Latin America

The Colombian, who won the Memorial Day Weekend classic for Ganassi in 2000 and for Penske in 2015, is now a full-time member of the Acura Team Penske team in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

Following his return to Indy car after six seasons in Formula 1 and seven in NASCAR, Montoya not only won Indy in 2015, but also only lost the championship on a tiebreak with Scott Dixon.

He was replaced fulltime in Penske’s IndyCar squad by eventual champion Josef Newgarden for 2017, but raced in the Indy Grand Prix and the 500 last May.

Montoya told Motorsport.com that he would speak to team owner Roger Penske about another entry in the 500, but for 2018, Penske has cut back to three fulltime entries – Newgarden, Simon Pagenaud and Will Power – and the extra ride for the Month of May has gone to Helio Castroneves. The Brazilian’s fulltime IndyCar career ended last September, as he has now joined Montoya in the IMSA arm of the squad. 

Team owner Roger Penske previously said he would allow Montoya to look for alternative drives in Indy, stating last year, “If he wants to run for another team, that would be his decision. There would be nothing that we would say no to. It would be his decision completely."

Montoya then began talks with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports-Honda, but team co-owner Sam Schmidt said in January, "I was told that Roger wouldn't let him.”

Now Montoya has confirmed that his full attention is on sportscars – his recently announced Le Mans drive [with United Autosports]  and his current IMSA campaign.

“I won’t be racing the Indy 500 because I am fully focused on getting the Acura Penske to victory lane in the IMSA championship and my upcoming debut in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. 

“[But] I will be for sure watching as my teammates go for a 17th win for Roger.”

Asked by Motorsport.com for comment, Penske provided a statement on its team policy. It read: “Our official position is that our drivers typically don’t compete against us in other series.” 

The Indy 500 recently reached its maximum field size of 33 cars and bumping will return in 2018, as Motorsport.com understands at least two and possibly three additional entries are expected.

shares
comments
Phoenix "promising" but there are many unknowns - Kanaan

Previous article

Phoenix "promising" but there are many unknowns - Kanaan

Next article

Fittipaldi “up to speed” for IndyCar debut

Fittipaldi “up to speed” for IndyCar debut
Load comments
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie Prime

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in CART Indy car for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular teammate Mauro Martini's passion for racing.

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review Prime

The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review

At the halfway point in the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels? David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Prime

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all for us. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, Helio explained his tactics to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021
How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status Prime

How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status

Helio Castroneves joined AJ Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears with the most Indianapolis 500 wins after sweeping around the outside of Alex Palou on the penultimate lap in a thrilling climax. In one race, he validated Michael Shank's and Jim Meyer's faith in him, and Helio himself discovered there's life after Penske after all.

IndyCar
Jun 1, 2021
Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious? Prime

Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious?

A quarter of the drivers racing in the 105th edition of the Indianapolis 500 are former winners - but are they the favourites? The veteran drivers largely impressed in qualifying - but there's also a plethora of young guns looking to secure victory at IndyCar's flagship race...

IndyCar
May 25, 2021
What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1? Prime

What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1?

The FIA says it wants American drivers in Formula 1, but would it take an IndyCar driver to transfer or does an American need to join the European junior ladder system to get there? By David Malsher-Lopez.

Formula 1
May 19, 2021
Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life Prime

Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life

After spending the majority of his 179-race Formula 1 career in middling to tail-end machinery, Romain Grosjean finds himself once again with an underdog team in IndyCar. While not without its challenges, he's relishing the more level playing field that means his Dale Coyne Racing crew can expect to claim a few scalps...

IndyCar
May 14, 2021