Juan Pablo Montoya No. 2 Verizon
WOULD YOU SAY YOU ARE MORE COMFORTABLE ON THE TEMPORARY STREET CIRCUITS NOW AFTER A FEW STARTS INTO YOUR RETURN TO INDYCAR?
“I definitely feel a lot more at ease on the street courses now and I believe that it’s showing in the speed we have. At Detroit we made the Firestone Fast Six for the first time all season. Our strategy has taken the most time to come around but I think we are getting there too. We knew that street courses and short ovals would be our biggest obstacles this year. All you can ask for after being away from the series for so long is to show progress. The No. 2 Verizon Chevy has definitely done that.”
THIS WILL BE A DIFFERENT HOUSTON CIRCUIT THAN WHAT YOU’VE COMPETED ON BEFORE. WHAT DID YOU DO TO PREPARE?
“I will watch some old race footage. I’ll pick Will’s brain and Helio’s brain. You know, there’s not much more that you can do. I’m not a big simulator guy. So when I’m going to a new track it really puts a premium on having a good plan in place so that we maximize our track time during the practice sessions. But when you have a team like Team Penske behind you it makes it much smoother, a much easier transition.”
Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet
- A DIFFERENT HOUSTON CIRCUIT: Juan Pablo Montoya has made two Verizon IndyCar Series starts in Houston, but they came on the former circuit that ran near the George R. Brown Convention Center in 1999-2000. In those two starts he earned one pole award (1999) and a top finish of second place (2000).
- MONTOYA ON THE STREETS: Montoya has made 20 career Verizon IndyCar Series starts on temporary street circuits. He has amassed a total of four wins and six Verizon P1 Pole Awards in that discipline.
- OFF WEEKEND RACING: While many other drivers used the two-week break to rest for the stretch run to the Verizon IndyCar Series season finale at Auto Club Speedway, Montoya returned to the NASCAR Cup Series on June 15 for his first start of the year for Team Penske. He finished 18th and completed all 200 laps in the event at Michigan International Speedway.
- 50 STARTS: This weekend Montoya will make his 50th career Verizon IndyCar Series start when he takes the green flag for the first Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston race on Saturday. His first start came in 1999 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In his 49 previous starts, Montoya has garnered 11 career wins