Helio Castroneves on tight racing at Texas: “I was like, ‘Ahhh!’ and I closed my eyes”


Texas Motor Speedway has long been one of IndyCar driver Helio Castroneves’ favorite tracks.

He loves the high speeds and the ultra-close racing, perhaps closer there than at any other track that the Verizon IndyCar Series visits in its 16-race schedule.

It’s also where there invariably are a lot of close calls – at least those that don’t eventually devolve into a wreck.

But Saturday’s race set somewhat of a new point in Castroneves’ career.

Here’s how he explained it:

“Some of the close calls were incredible. To be honest, I was like, ‘Ahhh!’ and I closed my eyes.

“Sometimes it was like, ‘That’s going to be a close one.’

“With drivers that you can trust, when you run in the front like that all the time, it’s great to run like that. It’s fun, it’s challenging.

“But stupid drivers, when they have no idea what they’re doing, it’s dangerous.”

(Gee, that sounds like most every day on the freeway for most of us.)

But the three-time Indianapolis 500 winner still felt comfortable amid the Texas tornado that is racing at TMS.

“I felt safer doing that type of stuff tonight than running 12th or 13th at Indianapolis, because you know that everybody’s going to give an inch (at Texas),” Castroneves said. “It’s small, but they’re going to give an inch.”