Posts Tagged ‘ Helio Castroneves ’

Helio Castroneves is picking up extra duties, including autographing racing memorabilia for giveaways and becoming a part-time hair stylist, around his Fort Lauderdale home this off-season as his partner, Adriana Henao, prepares to run her first marathon.

Henao handed over a few extra daily responsibilities to the three-time Indianapolis 500 winner while she trains with her business partner, Yuly Vanbrakel, for the Nov. 2 TCS New York City Marathon. In return, Castroneves is waking up early to help the couple’s 4-year-old daughter, Mikaella, get to school on time and even signing some racing memorabilia for prizes for people who donate to the cause Henao’s run supports.

“He wakes at 6:15 a.m., gets her ready and combs her hair,” she says. “He loves doing her hair.”

Henao’s Nov. 2 run raises money for actor Sean Penn’s J/P Haitian Relief Organization, which provides health care, education and housing for people who were left homeless by the 2010 earthquake. Last year, the team raised over $300,000. This year, Henao is hoping she can bring in at least $5,000 toward the total.

Prizes for winning donors include:

+ A Shell/Pennzoil collectors mini helmet signed by Castroneves. The design replicates the helmet he raced in during the 2014 Indianapolis 500. (Anyone who donates $20 to Henao’s effort between Oct. 27 and Nov. 1 is entered into the drawing. To donate: https://www.crowdrise.com/TheLongRunForHaiti/fundraiser/adrianahenao .)

+ A 2014 Indianapolis 500 program signed by all 33 drivers in the race, including Castroneves, 2014 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, Tony Kanaan and Juan Pablo Montoya. (Anyone who donates $50 or more between Oct. 27 and Nov. 1 is entered into the drawing, which will have two winners.)

Helio Castroneves' partner, Adriana Henao, is running the TCS New York City Marathon to raise money for actor Sean Penn's J/p Haitian Relief Organization.

Preparing for the marathon, she’s spending most of her time running, eating and sleeping or thinking about one of the three.

“I’m sleeping like I never did and eating like crazy,” she said. “I have never done so much exercise before. Every day, I run.”

In November Castroneves and Mikaella are scheduled to head to New York City to cheer her on. Will they stand along the route with signs when Henao runs by? Maybe, but they haven’t planned that far ahead.

The experience has given Henao a new appreciation for an IndyCar driver’s training regime.

“I always admired that from Helio, being able to be so focused and working so hard for something. I tend to start things and then go to another thing without finishing it,” she said. “I kind of envied him, doing something all day and focusing on it. That happened to me with running.”

Still, she’s looking forward to going back to a more relaxed exercise routine after the marathon.

“I’m not going to feel so tired all the time – my legs hurt 24 hours (a day),” she said. “I have so much respect for athletes.”

To donate, visit: https://www.crowdrise.com/TheLongRunForHaiti/fundraiser/adrianahenao

The Final Laps

Posted on: June 7, 2011 | Comments(2) | Race Tracks | By: Iowa Speedway

Thanks for stopping back to the Iowa Speedway blog here on Indycar.com! Like the drivers who will be thanking their sponsors before and after racing in the Iowa Corn Indy 250 presented by Pioneer on June 25th, we too need to thank some people first before we get into this months topic – our readers. Without you we wouldn’t even be writing this story so thank you!

Watching this year’s Indy 500, which by the way was amazing, and seeing the final pass for the win an idea popped into my head – this month’s topic.

JR took the lead with three laps to go; I thought for sure the race would be over in the neighborhood of 120 seconds since drivers completed laps at just over 40 seconds when running at full speed. Could I have been more wrong?! Maybe. When JR took reins of this year’s 500 and until the winner, Dan Weldon, crossed the finish line there was an elapse time of 128 seconds. Eight seconds is a big deal in the world of motorsports!

A combination of Weldon being behind JR and not running at full speed to conserve fuel makes up that eight second difference. In my opinion, that final eight seconds is and probably will always be the longest of JR’s racing career, sadly.

Shall we compare the last 128 seconds of the Indy 500 to what might be the last 128 seconds here at Iowa Speedway so you can see how vastly different things can be from track to track? Lets!

10INDY64621DP

Tony Kanaan leading at the Iowa Speedway in 2010

In the time they turned those three laps at Indianapolis they would’ve completed over seven laps at Iowa Speedway. Circuits around this 7/8 or .875 mile oval are 17.5 seconds long at full speed in an IZOD IndyCar. That is a total of 28 turns here compared to only 12 they completed at Indianapolis, plus the lap traffic.

10INDY66822MBE

Kanaan and Castroneves after the 2010 Iowa Corn Indy 250

Look back to 2010 when TK took the lead with 10 laps to go, about 175 seconds left in the race, and you can really see there was a greater chance of something going wrong. He had 40 turns to get through while dealing with several lap down cars. The winner is never known until the car crosses the finish line, and never has that been more true following this year’s 100th Anniversary of the Indianapolis 500.

Be sure to come out to Iowa Speedway on June 25th to see if we have that same excitement during the final seconds/laps of this year’s Iowa Corn Indy 250 presented by Pioneer. Thanks for reading. Please keep your comments and suggestions coming. We’re listening – and thanks again for the support!

It’s evident when driving through the streets of Sao Paulo that Brazilians are extremely passionate about motorsport.   Ayrton Senna murals are painted on building sides and under bridges all over this massive city.  As a result this South American country has not only produced the world’s most legendary driver (Senna) but also some great racing circuits and outstanding INDYCAR drivers.

One of my favorite racetracks is here in Brazil.  Without a doubt, it was one of the most unique ovals ever built (the exception being Trenton, NJ). The Circuito de Jacarepaguá in Rio was quite a site to be seen in the mid-90’s when INDYCAR came to town.

Rio, in every definition of the word, was a Roval.  Turn 1 was a sharp corner, requiring the drivers to get on the brakes, downshift once (maybe twice) and jump back on the throttle. Turn 2 was wide open all the way to turn 3 which was full throttle for some drivers and then back on to the brakes for turn 4.  The layout produced great passing and promoted aggressive driving.

Rio was also the site of one of the most spectacular shunts in INDYCAR history.  Mark Blundell essentially tore down the outside wall in Turn 1 when his brakes failed going down the front stretch.  He made an attempt to collect his teammate to help soften the impact but he just  barely missed.  The resulting impact is terrifying and miraculously Blundell emerged from the car unscathed.  Fast forward in the above video to the 10:40 mark for video of the incident.

The list of Brazilian drivers who have driven in INDYCAR is long and prestigious.  With names like Fittipaldi, Kanaan, and Castroneves, Brazilian drivers have proved that they are and will continue to be a force to be reckoned with.

Emerson Fittipaldi, one of the greatest drivers in any car, was one of my favorite drivers growing up. “Emmo” was fast, brave, and exciting to watch.  Below is video from one of Emerson’s hard fought battles with Nigel Mansell.

For many people when they think of the IZOD IndyCar Series they think of Helio Castroneves.  The personable, excitable, and energetic Brazilian 3-time Indianapolis 500 winner has been a staple of the IZOD IndyCar Series for many years now.  His personality, passion for racing, and on camera antics have been great for the sport.  What some seem to miss, especially lately, is how impressive Helio is behind the wheel.

Tony Kanaan is without a doubt one of the fiercest competitors in the IZOD IndyCar Series.  The tough driver from Salvador, Brazil has proved this year that just because he’s changed teams it doesn’t mean he can be ignored.  Taking KV Racing Technologies to some of their best finishes in recent memory TK has proudly positioned himself in 3rd position in the overall points standings.  If you watched the Indianapolis 500 last year and didn’t pay attention to Kanaan’s drive you missed one of the most exciting and entirely legendary performances a the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  Starting 33rd and passing 22 cars to finish in 11th position was nothing short of miraculous.  TK showed once again that he’s not lost a step and certainly hasn’t lost any of his nerve, the man is still a master of the outside pass.

Drivers pay tribute to Senna

Posted on: April 28, 2011 | Comments(15) | Drivers | By: Arni

Ayrton Senna's gravesite

SÃO PAULO –Racing drivers tend to avoid hospitals and graveyards because those places can remind them of the dangers of the sport.

Those reminders, however, didn’t stop two-time IZOD IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon from paying his respects to Ayrton Senna, the legendary Brazilian racing champion, who is buried in São Paulo’s Morumbi Cemetery.

“Popped out to see Senna’s grave,” Dixon wrote on Twitter. “Very quiet in a busy city. What a legend!”

Senna remains a hero to many drivers from around the world but no place more than in his home country. The fact that the Itaipava São Paulo Indy 300 presented by Nestle occurs on the 17th anniversary of his passing (May 1) provides extra motivation to the five Brazilian drivers in the field.

“It would be an extremely important win to me because he was a hero not only to me, but for all of Brazil,” said three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves. “(Winning on Sunday) would be a memorable day for me not only to win here in Brazil, but on a very special day to many Brazilians. I am going to do everything I can to make sure that can happen.”

Like Castroneves, Ana Beatriz considers Senna her hero, even though she had only begun to race go-karts a few months before his death.

“Senna means a lot to me,” said Beatriz, who like Senna is a native of São Paulo. “He is still a big reference when I think about the sport. We can still watch his races on video and we can see his determination and focus when he raced. He’s still a big hero in Brazil and everyone remembers the anniversary of his death and his birthday.  Racing on May 1 and maybe winning the race in Brazil will be the perfect way to say thank you to him for all he did for us. “

Vitor Meira will carry a very personal tribute to Senna during the race weekend. Meira had his helmet painter Art Rotondo paint a mural of Senna’s racing accomplishments on the back of the helmet he will use in the race.

“I remember May 1, 1994, when he unfortunately passed away,” Meira said. “It’s just a way to say he’s still in our minds. I put him on my helmet and wanted to do something individually out of respect to what he meant to me.”

2011 and Photography

Posted on: March 26, 2011 | Comments(14) | Flickr | By: Daniel

I’ve lost count of the number of Flickr or photography related posts I’ve written on this blog. As a hobbyist in the area, I have tremendous respect for the people that shoot our IndyCar events. Our photography staff and the numerous photographers that follow the IndyCar circus from event to event, put in long hours to capture ‘the’ shot. They are typically the first and last to leave the track. They spend 10-14 hours in all types of weather, loaded up with equipment, dodging the crowds, teams and fast cars. Then they rush back to the media center to review, edit and upload images. It’s a really tough job. But we reap the benefits. These images appear all over the world, and of course on indycar.com.

Bourdais in pit lane

Bourdais at St. Pete

[More]

The week started with a celebration of life service for long-time Indianapolis Motor Speedway public address announcer Tom Carnegie. Fans could view Livestream coverage of the event, which included eulogies by Sarah Fisher and Ed Carpenter, online and archived footage of the event can still be viewed here. Fan memories and tributes from Teams, Drivers, former drivers and notable members of the racing community continue to pour in. Carnegie truly was a legend.

On Tuesday, fans were given the second photo in our series of photo caption contests. This time, Helio Castroneves could be found talking race strategy. While that’s what was really happening, fans submitted some clever, funny, and, at times, off-beat captions for what Helio could possibly be saying. From over 200 comments, tweets, and messages, the field of captions was narrowed to five. Congratulations to our week 2 winner, Jeff Chiszar who wins an IndyCar prize pack and, most importantly, bragging rights. Keep on submitting those captions, we have a good photo in store for you this week.

This weekend the iRacing.com IZOD IndyCar Premier Series kicked off. Read more here about this INDYCAR sanctioned, 16-race, 36-week series contested online on oval road courses on alternating weekends.

In case you missed it, Chip Ganassi Racing followed up last week’s IndyCar.com race shop  (Read about it) visit with an updated Twitter handle this week. They can now be tagged @CGRTeams. Follow them for updates on @INDYCAR and drivers Scott Dixon, Graham Rahal, Charlie Kimball, and Dario Franchitti.

Speaking of Dario, the reigning IZOD IndyCar Series and Indianapolis 500 champion was inducted into the Motor Sport Magazine Hall of Fame during ceremonies this past week in London. Read more about the honor and find out which of your favorite drivers are also in the Hall of Fame by clicking here.

Franchitti is not the only driver picking up accolades this past week. Verizon Team Penske driver Will Power was voted Road Racer of the Year by the readers of RACER Magazine (Read more).

More signs of the season have emerged as work on the circuit layout  for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (Read more here) and New Hampshire Motor Speedway announced plans to enhance the fan experience with more race footage and replays on a new, $1.2 million Panasonic scoreboard and video system in the middle of the infield (Full story here).

Conor Daly, Shannon McIntosh, and Bryan Clauson all found their way across the web this week. Shannon will join the Mazda Road to Indy in 2011 as part of the Cooper Tires presents the USF2000 National Championship powered by Mazda. She’ll drive the No. 2 Mazda for the 12 events for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing (More here). Bryan Clauson continued to catch fans up with an inside look at his experiences on the Mazda Road to Indy. Find out more about what he’s already doing to prepare for the season by reading BC’s Blog here. 2010 Star Mazda champion Conor Daly  (Twitter @ConorDaly22) is moving up to Firestone Indy Lights in 2011. Find out more about what the 2011 season looks like for the son of former Indianapolis 500 starter Derek Daly here. All three, Daly, Clauson, and McIntosh are drivers to keep an eye on.

Late in the week, we let it leak that this Tuesday, IndyCar.com will give fans a chance to win something cool. Hundreds of messages poured in to say what the ideal prize for an IndyCar fan would be. Imagine our surprise when, yep, someone guessed exactly what we’re giving away. Glad to see we’ve nailed it and came up with a great prize, so stay tuned to IndyCar.com and our Facebook and Twitter pages this Tuesday to find out how you can win.

Racing is right around the corner — 32 days until the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg!

Earlier this week, on our Facebook page we posted a photo and asked fans to provide captions for the image. We’ve selected the top five submissions (from a total of 140 comments) and are now asking fans to vote for their favorite. The winner with the highest number of votes by 11:59PM EST will receive an IndyCar Prize Pack. Fans can Tweet @IndyCar their favorite caption or leave their choice below. Congratulations to last week’s winner, Colleen Ney McGuire! Watch for another photo caption contest and your chance to win a prize from IndyCar next week!

Helio Fan Caption Contest 2-15-2011

Fans, tell us what Helio Castroneves is saying. Leave your caption below!

1. Kayle Sutton- “Look, Jack- I won Dancing with the Stars AND three Indy 500’s. I think I can handle this.”

2. Jeff Chiszar- “No, Jack… I will not pull your finger!”

3. Teri Polzin- “And then you get to do the Samba and they let us wear feathers…”

4. Tim Piper- “La, La, La, you can talk all you want, Jack, I still can’t hear a word you’re saying!”

5. Daniel Fouchey- “Yes, I know it’s a tire. We have them in Brazil too!”

Similar to other Midwestern cities this week, Indianapolis was slammed with ice and snow storms causing team shops and even the INDYCAR offices to take a snow day. Despite the weather (and a newly formed ice rink in the INDYCAR parking lot) nothing can stop the momentum towards an exciting 2011 season.

Fans can now follow Verizon Team Penske driver, Will Power, on Twitter @12WillPower

Fans can now follow Verizon Team Penske driver, Will Power, on Twitter @12WillPower

Let’s start with Social Media (I might be partial) this week Verizon Team Penske driver, Will Power joined Twitter as @12WillPower. I know, I know, this is not the biggest news in racing per-say. BUT, it is a big deal when you consider the fact that now IZOD IndyCar Series fans can get live updates directly from Will. There’s nothing cooler at the track than an all-access pass, right? Well consider this piece of news to be your year-round all-access pass to learning more about one of your favorite drivers. This week, Will Power could also be found blogging on SpeedTV.com (check it out here). In the blog, Power shares what he’s been doing in the off-season to physically and mentally prepare for the 2011 season.

Will Power was not the only driver caught blogging this week. Ryan Briscoe shared his Super Bowl plans with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The Australian ‘Cheesehead’ had plenty to say about the Packers and why he’s a fan. (Check out Ryan’s first post here and second post here). Read more about how Briscoe and his fellow Penske drivers, Helio Castroneves and Will Power, will be spending Super Bowl Sunday here.

Penske also announced new sponsors for their 2011 rides in Guidepoint and PPG. Check out two new schemes that will be on track this season:

Team Penske Guidepoint No. 6 car

No. 6 Guidepoint Team Penske IndyCar

Team Penske PPG No. 6 car

No. 6 PPG Team Penske IndyCar

From Social Media let’s jump over to this week’s announcement that Takuma Sato and E.J. Viso will return as anchors for the 2011 season at KV Racing Technology-Lotus (read more here). In the article, Viso shares the positive steps taken in 2010 that have the teamed poised for success in 2011. Lotus’ motorsport director, Claudio Berro wants fans to know that “last year was all about learning. This year, we would really like to achieve some podium finishes.”

Fans were excited to hear that Sebastien Bourdais spent this past week testing with Dale Coyne Racing along with Martin Plowman (full article here). Andretti Autosport unveiled that Mike Conway will be their fourth man in a 2011 line-up that already includes Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick and Ryan Hunter-Reay. Find out more about what Conway’s done to rehab from last season’s Indianapolis 500 injuries here.

Edmonton Indy promoters plan to unveil the race’s new circuit layout and ticket plans this Tuesday, February 8 (read more here). So far, they have only shared that the new layout places a few grandstands incredibly close to racing action — something that should get fans excited for Edmonton. Keep an eye on IndyCar.com for the new circuit layout as soon as it’s announced.

Today the Super Bowl takes place in Dallas, Texas, so I will close with a little humor from nearby Texas Motor Speedway which found itself covered in snow just a few days ago. Check out their Facebook page for a photo of the track.

We’re officially seven (7) weeks away from the start of the 2011 IndyCar season, what in the news this week has you most excited?

This week was full of signs of a quickly-approaching INDYCAR season. With IndyCars back on the track testing, Pace Cars on the move, and members of the Indy 500 Centennial Troops Tour making their way back to the U.S. from Europe and the Middle East, fans have plenty to be excited about.

The first open test is on March 14 at Barber Motorsports Park but some teams have already been out testing new drivers and new techniques. Photos and rumors circulated online this week with teams eager to get back on track for the 2011 season. Newman/Haas Racing completed a two-day test at the 1.65-mile Sebring International Raceway road course with Canadian rookie James Hinchcliffe (Read more here).

Milwaukee Mile embarked on bringing the excitement of their 2011 pace car to Milwaukee-area hotspots including University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. The event asks fans to find their Pace Car and e-mail of photo of you and the car. They will post the photos to their website and fans get a chance to win 1 race ticket. INDYCAR races at the Milwaukee Mile on June 18th and 19th, so fans have plenty of time to spot the Pace Car and win. See where the Pace Car has been so far, here.

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Chevrolet unveiled the 2011 Indianapolis 500 Pace Car at the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, AZ. The car, a Camaro Convertible, was then auctioned off on Saturday, January 22 with live coverage provided by SPEED and proceeds benefitting the David Foster Foundation. The winning bidder (with a bid of $225,000 USD) also received the opportunity to drive the Pace Car on a Parade Lap at the Indianapolis 500. As one fan put it, “Only $225k for the chance of a lifetime? Now that’s a deal!”

Two-Time Indianapolis 500 Winner, Arie Luyendyk and David Foster

Two-Time Indianapolis 500 Winner, Arie Luyendyk, Prepares to Drive David Foster and the 2011 Indianapolis 500 Pace Car onto the Auction Block

Going from Pace Cars to politics, the Indianapolis 500 Centennial Troops Tour contingency has made their way back to the States after spreading goodwill to troops stationed in the Middle East and Europe. Amazing photo and videos emerged from the tour and can still be viewed on the IndyCar YouTube and Flickr pages. Through the tour, Mario Andretti provided continuous coverage for USA Today, Sarah Fisher for ESPN for Women, and Al Unser Jr. for ESPN. Their articles and a running story on IndyCar.com provided fans with an inside look at the tour.

Jack Arute, Martin Plowman, and Davey Hamilton pose with soldiers at the USO Warrior Center

Jack Arute, Martin Plowman, and Davey Hamilton pose with soldiers at the USO Warrior Center

Penske Racing driver, Helio Castroneves, jetted off to Brazil and spoke with the Mayor of São Paulo, Gilberto Kassab, and discussed the upcoming Sao Paulo Indy 300. “Mayor Kassab has always been open to suggestion on how to improve the Sao Paulo Indy 300,” said Castroneves. Read the full article here.

At the same time, IndyCar CEO, Randy Bernard, was sitting down with SPEED.com this week to explain oval restarts for the 2011 season. “We want to do what’s in the best interest of the series,” said Bernard. “I don’t think our drivers realized how many fans wanted this two-abreast restart and we want to make sure to do it in a way our fans approve.” See more of what Randy Bernard had to say here.

We might be a few months away from the official start to the 2011 INDYCAR season, but the signs of the season are everywhere and INDYCAR is sliding into gear.

This week I figured I’d go a bit of a different direction and put on display five of my favorite IndyCar moments.  This is by no means a definitive list as to the “greatest” moments ever in IndyCar but it’s more of a quick highlight reel of some of my favorite moments.  I hope to write a post of this “type” more often and expose more of my favorite moments from the past couple years as well as the “good ole’ days.”  Feel free to post links or descriptions to your favorite moments in IndyCar.

1.) Helio Castroneves at Indianapolis 2007

How can you not be amazed by that?!  The move he makes in that video is completely insane.  It truly shows the level of bravery some of these guys have.  Taking the the low-side on that pass, coming with in inches of the wall, and never backing off the throttle… THAT is IndyCar racing.  I can’t imagine how much fun it is driving a Team Penske Racing Indycar, he’s off the throttle going into 1 but he’s still passing cars!

2.) Tomas Scheckter at Indianapolis 2004

If you’ve watched IndyCar racing since 2002 you know one thing… Tomas Scheckter loves the outside pass.  In this video from the 2004 Indianapolis 500, Tomas passes seven cars going into turn three.  What the video doesn’t show is how Tomas had to catch the car going into three.  You can hear him come off the throttle but unfortunately can’t see his steering wheel.  If you happen to attend an IndyCar race that Tomas is racing in during the 2011 season be sure to keep your eye on him during the starts and restarts, he won’t disappoint.

3.) Vitor Meira at Indianapolis 2008

While this move was quite risky and could be considered “dirty” (as I’m sure Ed Carpenter thought) it’s pretty incredible.  IndyCar racing is all about taking it to the extreme limit.  Everyone wants to win so badly that coming down to the final laps of a race the “all or nothing” mentality sets in.  Vitor has finished second so many times I’m sure all he was thinking about was “WIN” and he sure as heck went for it.

4.) Tomas Scheckter at Milwaukee 2007

Yep, it’s another Tomas Scheckter highlight.  The guy is mighty exciting to watch.  I have no idea how he does it but he seems to find grip where no one else can find it.  I particularly like this video because you can really see how much work he’s doing in the cockpit making those passes.  He’s definitely using the “pitch and catch” method on the high side.

5.) Dario Franchitti at Sao Paolo 2010

I’m pretty partial to road and street racing and I chose this video for a couple of reasons.  It’s not necessarily a “highlight” but it shows how much skill it takes to muscle one of these beasts into turning left and right.  It also shows that Tony Cotman is the MAN at designing tracks.  This place is amazing…great scenery, bumpy, and super long straights into heavy braking zones.  Personally I didn’t want them to grind the track coming off the last corner because I thought the lack of grip added another element of skill to the race, but then again I don’t own a team so I understand. :D

I look forward to hearing/seeing some of your favorite moments and showing you guys some more of my favorites in the future!