“Stunned shock” is probably the best way to describe the news Monday morning that Juan Pablo Montoya would move back to open-wheel racing in 2014, shifting from NASCAR to IndyCar and driving for Roger Penske.
Given Montoya hasn’t raced in open-wheel since his departure from McLaren’s Formula One squad in 2006, it’s a very surprising move. That said, it’s about as surprising as when Montoya turned his back on F1 to drive for Chip Ganassi’s NASCAR team later in 2006 and beginning full-time in 2007.
Here’s how Twitter reacted from a variety of onlookers, including media, drivers and fans/observers. There’s more to come but here’s a sampling.
Juan Pablo Montoya joining Penske Racing #IndyCar team. Oh, look at that.
— Jenna Fryer (@JennaFryer) September 16, 2013
Penske deal came together last week, is my understanding, hence why JPM called Andretti to call off further work on that project. — Jenna Fryer (@JennaFryer) September 16, 2013
Penske deal also came together despite repeated ducking and quasi-denials from the majority of The Committe of any interest in Montoya. — Jenna Fryer (@JennaFryer) September 16, 2013
Lastly, quite the interesting betrayal. Ganassi and Penske are massive rivals. Dixon and Helio fighting for title.
— Jenna Fryer (@JennaFryer) September 16, 2013
Montoya to Team Penske INDYCAR team starting in 2014. Wow.
— TrackSide Online (@tracksideonline) September 16, 2013
Oh emm gee. No wonder Montoya turned down Andretti…he’s headed to Penske! #IndyCar — Ross Bynum (@therossbynum) September 16, 2013
Montoya to Penkse’s #IndyCar team next year. This is going to be fun to watch… — Mike Nelson (@mikenele) September 16, 2013
Joining @penskeracing in 2014 is @jpmontoya, welcome back to open wheel JP! #INDYCAR
— Paddock Insider (@PaddockInsider) September 16, 2013
Welcome back to single-seaters @jpmontoya. You never should’ve left, champ.
— Will Buxton (@willbuxton) September 16, 2013
Well, this is either going to be epic or embarrassing. Frankly I hope it is the former. And I hope Indycar PR the hell out of it. — Will Buxton (@willbuxton) September 16, 2013
Indycar 2014 is starting to look all kinds of awesome. Wonder if @JonBeekhuis, @KevinLee23 or @heymartysnider fancy a job swap? — Will Buxton (@willbuxton) September 16, 2013
Has the whole racing world last its damn mind RT @JennaFryer: Juan Pablo Montoya joining Penske Racing #IndyCar team. Oh, look at that.
— Efrain Olivares (@RacerEfrain) September 16, 2013
BREAKING NEWS: COUNTLESS TIRED AND PLAYED OUT JET-DRYER JOKES COMING TO #INDYCAR. #montoya
— nascarcasm (@nascarcasm) September 16, 2013
Sincerely hope Chip Ganassi wasn’t standing on a pit wall when he heard this news. #montoya #indycar #midohio — nascarcasm (@nascarcasm) September 16, 2013
Congrats to @PenskeRacing and @jpmontoya for keeping that on the down-low. #DealDone! — RACER (@RACERmag) September 16, 2013
Cool news RT @INDYCARPR: From http://t.co/qq6dDyJVqk: @jpmontoya joins @penskeracing for 2014 http://t.co/UGxm2NAl9J #IndyCar
— Guy Smith (@GUYSMITH16) September 16, 2013
I can’t remember a shock to the racing world this big since the last time @jpmontoya announced a series switch. MEGA! #IndyCar
— Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno) September 16, 2013
HUGE news that @jpmontoya will be back in @indycar next year. One of the all time greats, welcome back! — Graham Rahal (@GrahamRahal) September 16, 2013
Buenos Dias. Me levanto con la noticia de @jpmontoya en la @IndyCar junto a @penskeracing Gran noticia! Colombia grande! @MarcaColombia — Sebastián Saavedra (@sebsaavedra) September 16, 2013
Que buena noticia lo de @jpmontoya en indycar en 2014!Muy positivo para los pilotos Colombianos en Indy!trabajando para estar ahí en 2014!
— Carlos Munoz (@CarlosMunoz026) September 16, 2013
@jpmontoya to @penskeracing. Interesting news for 2014. Should make a winning combo and will be fun to watch for sure
— Connor De Phillippi (@CDePhillippi) September 16, 2013
I wonder how Ryan Briscoe feels his old ride is now being used to bring Montoya back? I’m sure his wife would ask, “your point” to me. :p — Spike Rogan (@spikerogan) September 16, 2013
#Indycar Montoya to Penske. Wow! In other news, shares in Dunkin’ Donuts have plummeted today. — Andy Hallbery (@Hallbean) September 16, 2013
JPM to Penske IndyCar. Uhm, yeaaa… wow. Did not see that in the cards.
— James Black (@16AndGeorgetown) September 16, 2013
Love seeing my twitter and news feeds BLOWING up with JPM news. BIG for IndyCar.
— Matt Archuleta (@indy44) September 16, 2013
Huge news about @jpmontoya joining @penskeracing in #Indycar for 2014!! Very cool!!
— Pippa Mann (@PippaMann) September 16, 2013
The most shocking thing we’ve learned today is that Montoya can still fit in an #IndyCar.
— Neffry (@Neffry_Aawg) September 16, 2013