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Roger Penske to be honored on “Legends Day” at Indianapolis

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Iconic Indianapolis 500 team owner Roger Penske will be saluted Saturday, May 26 during “Legends Day Honoring Roger Penske” at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 96th Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 27 will mark the 40th anniversary of the first Indianapolis 500 victory for Penske. Mark Donohue drove Penske’s Sunoco McLaren to victory in the 56th Indianapolis 500 on May 27, 1972. Penske-owned cars have earned 15 race victories and 16 poles – both records by a wide margin – in “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”

“The Indianapolis 500 and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway have meant so much to me personally as well as our race teams,” Penske said. “I am honored to celebrate the anniversary of our first Indy 500 win with the fans on May 26, and we look forward to an exciting race weekend.”

Penske will participate in a question-and-answer session with fans May 26 on the Coca-Cola Stage in the Pagoda Plaza, followed by a brief autograph session.

Other featured events on “Legends Day Honoring Roger Penske” will include the annual Public Drivers’ Meeting on pit road adjacent to the Tower Terrace grandstand, autograph sessions with the 2012 Indianapolis 500 starting field of 33 drivers and former Indy 500 drivers, and a huge Indianapolis 500 memorabilia show featuring vendors from the United States, Europe and Australia.

Admission to IMS on “Legends Day Honoring Roger Penske” will be $10 for adults, with children 12 and under free when accompanied by an adult.

“It’s fitting to pay tribute to Roger Penske, one of the true icons of the Indianapolis 500, on the 40th anniversary of his first victory at Indianapolis,” said Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation president and chief executive officer. “His teams and drivers have set an incredible standard for excellence and professionalism at the Speedway, and Roger has become a landmark figure of the world’s greatest race. This will be a memorable day for fans and everyone who loves the Speedway in May to honor Roger.”

Best known for his multiple Indianapolis 500 victories with Rick Mears (1979, 1984, 1988, 1991) and Helio Castroneves (2001, 2002, 2009), Penske also has scored “500” victories with Donohue (1972), Bobby Unser (1981), Danny Sullivan (1985), Al Unser (1987), Emerson Fittipaldi (1993), Al Unser Jr. (1994), Gil de Ferran (2003) and Sam Hornish Jr. (2006).

Penske Racing holds nearly every record in Indy car racing, with 159 victories, 203 pole positions and 12 national championships.

 

Source: Racer Global Racing News. Fast

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INDYCAR: Double-Wide Oval Restarts New For 2011

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One of the loudest complaints from Indy car fans during the past few years has been the boring, strung-out, follow-the-leader restarts on oval tracks.

But that’s all going to change in 2011.

Starting with this year’s Indianapolis 500, two abreast restarts (aka NASCAR style) will be in vogue for the first time since CART tried it the late ‘90s.

“Roger Penske and Chip Ganassi say it works with NASCAR and creates better racing and that’s what we’re supposed to be about,” said IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard.

“I believe this is a very positive move that Brian (Barnhart, chief steward) is making and as it’s a lame duck year for the car and we promised our fans better competition and value, so this fits.”

Bernard intends to discuss the new restarts with the drivers and owners Tuesday prior to his State of Union press conference but his mind was pretty much made up after hearing from the fans for the past 10 months.
The drivers have been hearing rumblings about the new restarts for a couple months and many of them were against it.

“It’s going to be pretty wild, that’s for sure,” said Will Power, who captured the most victories (five) and finished runner-up in the IZOD IndyCar championship.

In addition, the restart zone on ovals will be moved up closer to the start/finish line instead of between Turns 3 and 4, another move to get the field more bunched up.

Road courses and street circuits will remain single-file restarts.

Another rule change, which should be positive with the competitors, is that pit selections will now be based on qualifying from the previous race instead of entrant points.

The way it’s been structured, the teams on top of the point standings were always guaranteed the last spot at pit out – a huge advantage.

Bernard is also expected to announce that the Edmonton race, dropped from the schedule because of conflicts with the city and the promoter, is back on for July 24th.

Octane Motorsports Events took over the financially-strapped but well attended event and originally balked at paying for circuit changes. The race was cancelled in early November but an outcry from city merchants and local race fans prompted a change of heart from the city council.

[Source: Auto Racing]

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Penske Unveil 2011 Lineup

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The Shell Oil Company and the Penske Corporation have unveiled their IZOD IndyCar Series car line-up for the 2011 season. An agreement between the two companies was signed back in April, and last night it was announced that we will see the #3 car of Helio Castroneves race with Shell V-Power Pennzoil branding at the 2011 Indianapolis 500. As part of the deal the Brazilian’s car will have a new livery of red, yellow and white to represent the colours of the Shell Oil Company.

Castroneves, who has won the Indy 500 three times with Penske Racing, said:

“I am very excited to be working with Shell and Pennzoil this season and I’m proud to have the opportunity to drive the beautiful Shell V-Power-Pennzoil Ultra car in the 2011 Indianapolis 500 representing the No. 1 premium gasoline and Pennzoil’s most advanced motor oil in the U.S. Shell and Pennzoil have such a great history in IndyCar racing and they have certainly had some special moments with Penske Racing at the Indy 500. I hope we can create a little bit more history together this May at Indianapolis!”

The link-up will see Shell and Pennzoil as the official fuel and motor oil supplier to the Penske Corporation, and from next year onwards will see the two working together to offer insights into motor oil and fuel technology.

Outside of IndyCar, Penske’s Kurt Busch will have Shell Pennzoil branding on his #22 car throughout the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Castroneves who grabbed pole at last year’s Indianapolis 500 but finished 9th will be looking for a record equalling fourth Indianapolis 500 victory next May.

[Source: The Checkered Flag]

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