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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Chevy returns to Indycar with a big win from Castroneves; more likely to come

Chevy returning to Indycar racing was a big deal, and they have shown they are there to contend.

Helio Castroneves won the race, his third win at St. Petersburg, and earned his 26th career victory.

“This was a great effort for everyone,” said Castroneves, who moved into a tie for 13th place on IndyCar’s all-time list with his 26th career victory. “Chevy did a great job to keep everything under control. We had some issues in the beginning that we have to raise the revs so that we can have the battery, or something like that. But, to be honest, it didn't upset us, it makes our temperature in the engine very nice and everything went really smooth.”

Castroneves was driving for Roger Penske -- who also owns a NASCAR team and is used to winning in whatever field of motorsport enters

This is a great day for Chevrolet who made the commitment to come back into IndyCar racing,” said Roger Penske. “This is really an event that shows the commitment in the automobile industry in the U.S. All the engineers within Chevrolet teaming with Ilmor to bring a product to the marketplace like this car in one year is amazing.

“It’s going to be a great season. It’s great to be back racing.”
Castroneves' win led a strong contingent of Chevy drivers: Ryan Hunter-Reay (third), James Hinchcliffe (fourth), Ryan Briscoe (fifth), pole-sitter Will Power (seventh) and E.J. Viso (eighth).Chevrolet—now with a purpose-built Chevy IndyCar twin-turbocharged, direct-injected V-6—previously competed in Indy-style competition from 1986-93 and 2002-05 with a V-8, winning 104 races—including seven Indianapolis 500 wins—and powering six driver champions.

“This weekend was very satisfying from the perspective that all of the Chevrolet teams worked together to prepare for this first race, and the outcome was terrific,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet’s North American Vice President of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “I’m very proud of all of the teams that were here competing. This was a terrific day for all of the teams, and for Chevrolet as we introduce the twin-turbo Indy V-6.”

Prior to Castroneves' win, the last win for Chevrolet in Indycar came on June 11, 2005 when Tomas Scheckter won at Texas Motor Speedway.

Don't be surprised if this win to start the season is the first of many Indycar victories for Chevy this year; as they are looking pretty sharp straight out the gate.

The IndyCar Series next races at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala., on April 1, 2012.

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