Castroneves finishes 16th, Pagenaud 23rd
Newton, Iowa (23 July 2022) – Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) opened a high-speed doubleheader race weekend with a 16-place finish for Helio Castroneves and a 23rd place result for Simon Pagenaud in the Hy-Veedeals.com 250 on Saturday.
Castroneves ran as high as second in the No. 06 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda, turning more than five laps per minute on the banked .875-mile oval.
MSR teammate Pagenaud – winner of the most recent IndyCar race at Iowa in 2020 – qualified 21st for the race, with Castroneves gridded 25th in the 26-car field. However, Pagenaud managed to charge from last (23rd) in his 2020 victory, when he led 83 laps.
At the green flag, Castroneves quickly moved to 16th, with his No. 06 Honda showing strong initial pace. Castroneves made an early dive to the pits on lap 20 under the first full course caution period.
On the restart, Castroneves began picking up positions every other lap, needing just 11 laps to move from 18th to 10th. For the next 100 laps, Castroneves ran in or just outside the top ten, racing as high as second before the halfway mark.
Just past the halfway point of the race Castroneves started feeling the effects of high tire degradation. Holding into 13th for the majority of the second half of the race, Castroneves did all he could to hang on. As the checkered flag flew, Castroneves brought home the No. 06 Honda 16th in the order.
With Pagenaud starting 21st, the team opted to keep the 2020 Iowa race winner out on tack for 47 laps before pitting for the first time. Unfortunately, struggling with stability in the rear end, Pagenaud worked hard throughout the majority of the race to keep the No. 60 Honda within the top 15.
As Pagenaud hoped to finish the race without issue, he was struck by the No. 51 car on lap 185, resulting in a flat left rear tire. Pitting to replace the tire, Pagenaud was sent back out, ultimately crossing the finish line 23rd.
The weekend isn’t over yet as Sunday’s Hy-Vee Salute to Farmers 300 be set for a 3:00pm ET green flat start time. Pagenaud will start Sunday’s 300 lap race 16th while Castroneves will start 24th.
The race will be broadcast live on NBC and Peacock with IndyCar radio coverage on SiriusXM Ch. 160.
“The No. 06 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda was actually pretty good. We were able to make some great moves, but the tire degradation on our car was very difficult. This race – from what I can remember – was probably one of the toughest ones. I felt like I was racing in SRX, I was sideways a lot of times, so shoutout to them because it helped me out. Very difficult conditions in the last stint. We lost about four or five spots in the last stint, and I was just trying to hang on. It was very tough conditions out there, but we’ll take some notes and work on it for tonight and have a good race tomorrow.”
“Today wasn’t the best day for us. We really struggled with tire management throughout the entire race and it never seems to get better. Tonight we will have a deep look at today’s race and understand how we can get better tomorrow for tomorrow.”