Castroneves’ race ends early with electrical issue
Detroit, Mich. (5 June 2022) – Simon Pagenaud took a hard-fought ninth-place finish for Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) in Sunday’s Detroit Grand Prix, the final NTT INDYCAR SERIES race at Belle Isle Park. Pagenaud was running 7th on the final lap, but was passed by two cars on the final lap after a full course caution was called to unofficially be classified 9th.
Despite getting a strong start to the race, teammate Helio Castroneves had his race end early on board the No. 06 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda, finishing 25th after experiencing an electrical problem.
With a second row qualifying lockout, Pagenaud and Castroneves were on full attack at the start of the 70-lap race, each moving up a position. Both starting on Firestone reds, the two MSR Hondas settled into a rhythm with a focus on fuel and tire save early on with Pagenaud second and Castroneves third.
Both Pagenaud and Castroneves pitted for their first of two stops for the primary black tires on laps 15 and 16.
Just several laps after pitting, Castroneves encountered an electrical gremlin which effected the steering wheel. The three-time Detroit winner pitted on lap 25 to swap out the steering wheel, but unfortunately the issue would sideline Castroneves for the remainder of the race as his promising run ended early.
Pagenaud continued his hunt to the front of the field running in seventh throughout his second stint. Getting caught in lapped traffic, the No. 60 crew made the decision to call Pagenaud into the pits earlier than originally planned for the final stop of the race.
Pagenaud made his way back into the top ten for the final stretch of the race despite having to adapt a close adherence to fuel management after the last stop. Pagenaud managed his fluctuating fuel numbers perfectly through the very end of the race which saw the 2013 Detroit winner cross the line scored in ninth. Pagenaud was seventh when the full course caution fell but was passed by two cars on the final corners and was unofficially classified 9th.
The NTT IndyCar Series will be racing for the third consecutive weekend when it travels to Elkhart Lake, Wis., for the Sonsio Grand Prix at Road America next Sunday.
Meyer Shank Racing Driver Quotes:
“Great weekend overall for the entire Meyer Shank Racing team. We qualified so well with Helio and myself on the second row. We had a great start and we were running down Newgarden there for a while. Then we had some issues with the fuel mid-race, but eventually we finished seventh (classified 9th unofficially), which I think is a great result considering some of the issues we had. I’m quite excited about what we accomplished this weekend, every race is getting better and better. And now we’re showing ourselves on the pointy end of the grid, so I’m pretty excited about that heading to Road America next weekend.”
“Really unfortunate way to end the day. My steering wheel all of the sudden went dark and I couldn’t see when to shift and then it came back. So I knew it was something electrical. We came in to the pits to try and change the steering wheel, but that didn’t work, so it wasn’t something that simple. The No. 06 AutoNation / SiriusXM machine was going really really well and I was having a great time. This is definitely not how I would like to finish especially at the last race at Belle Isle but I know we’ll get everything solved for next weekend at Road America.”