Penske's Castroneves feels Hildebrand cost him shot at Indy 500 win

Helio Castroneves hit out at JR Hildebrand for costing him a shot at a fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the 100th running of the event

Penske's Castroneves feels Hildebrand cost him shot at Indy 500 win

Contact from Hildebrand on lap 162 of the 200-lap race damaged the left-rear wheel pod on Castroneves' Team Penske Dallara-Chevrolet.

He was able to pit and change the entire rear-wing assembly under a yellow, but could finish only 11th.

When asked what happened, Castroneves said: "Go ask him. He was behind so I have no idea.

"I felt a bump and basically that put us in a situation that was almost impossible to come back from.

"I'm really, really, really upset.

"I have to be careful what I say so I don't regret it later on.

"With that incident we missed an opportunity to fight for the win.

"I'm very disappointed in the way we ended up. It's just not reflective of the car that we had and the pitstops that we had."

Castroneves said the fact Hildebrand was only making a one-off appearance at Indy made the incident more painful.

"Especially in a race that is so important and for someone who races once - I can understand it if it's someone who's fighting for the lead - but, come on, it's ridiculous," he said.

Hildebrand, who finished sixth with Ed Carpenter Racing, accepted responsibility.

"I've got to go apologise to him," Hildebrand said.

"It starts to get really dicey when you don't know if you need to go to the outside or if you need to go to the inside and guys are running inside and outside. I thought I was going to need to go to the outside.

"He stayed put longer, so I changed direction and caught him and flipped him on the bumper pod.

"I feel really bad about it. I know it screwed up his race.

"He deserves another serious shot at this, but at the end of the day, it's all so close out there."

Castroneves had previously been involved in a pitlane incident that ended Andretti Autosport pair Townsend Bell and Ryan Hunter-Reay's victory chances.

Bell hit Castroneves as he exited the Penske pit and bounced into Hunter-Reay.

Both Andretti drivers had damage but Castroneves' car was unscathed.

"We had a phenomenal pitstop and when Townsend Bell came and there wasn't enough time to stop, he bumped into my left rear but the car was undamaged," Castroneves said.

shares
comments
Indy 500 winner Rossi had 'no idea' about ovals, boss Andretti says

Previous article

Indy 500 winner Rossi had 'no idea' about ovals, boss Andretti says

Next article

Bad Indy 500 pitstop prompted rookie Rossi's winning strategy

Bad Indy 500 pitstop prompted rookie Rossi's winning strategy
Load comments

About this article

Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , J.R. Hildebrand
Teams Team Penske
Author Bruce Martin
The Indycar season that proves Michael Andretti is better than F1 showed Plus

The Indycar season that proves Michael Andretti is better than F1 showed

Often unfairly characterised as a car-breaker, judged for his lack of an Indianapolis 500 win and a disappointing part-season of Formula 1 in 1993, Michael Andretti was highly respected by his rivals and only thwarted greater success by ill-fortune. When it all came together in 1991, he was a truly formidable force

IndyCar
Mar 6, 2021
How McLaren is striving towards IndyCar's elite Plus

How McLaren is striving towards IndyCar's elite

The second year of McLaren's full-time IndyCar return is looming, with Patricio O'Ward and Felix Rosenqvist leading its line-up. Strong team personnel and work behind the scenes means that 2021 could be the year it joins the established elite

IndyCar
Feb 21, 2021
The enigmatic legacy of a misunderstood Indy stalwart Plus

The enigmatic legacy of a misunderstood Indy stalwart

Flashes of brilliance amid spells of obscurity have been too common for Marco Andretti. While the third-generation racer has opted to bring his full-time IndyCar career to a close, his peaks and troughs have never been for want of trying

IndyCar
Jan 20, 2021
Why American racing's top dog is without equal Plus

Why American racing's top dog is without equal

A byword for success in business and in motorsport for over 50 years, Roger Penske's importance to the US scene cannot be understated. In an exclusive interview, the custodian of the IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway reflects on his journey

IndyCar
Jan 11, 2021
The McLaren that rendered its Indy rivals obsolete Plus

The McLaren that rendered its Indy rivals obsolete

When founder Bruce McLaren died in June 1970, his team could have folded. Instead, his loyal band rallied to produce a string of winners - including an Indycar game-changer that won its third Indianapolis 500 five years after its debut

IndyCar
Dec 22, 2020
Why Newgarden's best IndyCar season yet wasn't enough Plus

Why Newgarden's best IndyCar season yet wasn't enough

Josef Newgarden feels he didn't put a foot wrong in 2020, yet his finest season-long run of performances failed to yield a third series championship. But in a warning shot to Scott Dixon, Team Penske's team leader has vowed to redouble his efforts in 2021

IndyCar
Dec 21, 2020
How Dixon held on in IndyCar's most unpredictable season Plus

How Dixon held on in IndyCar's most unpredictable season

Three wins on the trot gave the Chip Ganassi Racing superstar the cushion he needed to hang on for a sixth title in the face of Josef Newgarden's late challenge. Here's the rundown of a typically frantic IndyCar campaign in an extraordinary year

IndyCar
Nov 28, 2020
The balancing act required for improving racing at Indy Plus

The balancing act required for improving racing at Indy

Calls for an improvement in the racing spectacle at the Indianapolis 500 have been met with small aerodynamic tweaks from IndyCar on superspeedways. But where such high speeds are involved, even minor adjustments require significant planning

IndyCar
Oct 31, 2020