For the seventh consecutive year, Helio Castroneves came up short in his bid to tie A.J. Foyt, Rick Mears and Al Unser for a fourth Indianapolis 500 title.
Even worse, Castroneves finished 11th in Sunday’s milestone 100th running of the 500, his worst finish in the 500 since 2011 (17th).
“I’m very disappointed in the way we ended up (at Indy),” Castroneves said. “It’s just not reflective of the car that we had and the pit stops that we had.
“The car was so strong. We had a car that could have won, but it wasn’t meant to be and we’ll move on.”
Rather than dwell on what might have been, Castroneves is focused on what lies ahead for him: the potential to rebound with strong performances in this weekend’s Chevrolet Dual In Detroit.
“I’m very much looking forward to putting Indianapolis behind us,” Castroneves said. “It was just such a frustrating ending there. We were in great shape one minute and not the next.”
Saturday’s and Sunday’s races are the only back-to-back, points-paying events on the Verizon IndyCar Series circuit. And both races on the Belle Isle street circuit afford Castroneves to pick up some very valuable points.
Castroneves is currently third in the rankings. Simon Pagenaud leads all drivers with 292 points, followed by defending series champ Scott Dixon with 235 points, and Castroneves with 224 points.
Indeed, Belle Isle has been one of Castroneves’ stronger tracks. In nine starts, he has one win, a runner-up, two other top-five and two other top-10 finishes.
“The Belle Isle event is tremendous and one that I always look forward to,” Castroneves said. “Other than the Sunday race last year (he finished a career-low 19th there due to a crash four laps from the finish), it’s a track that we’ve been able to do well at. We’re just excited to get up there and on the track.”