Castroneves joins Dixon in front row but still trails
The battle for the IndyCar championship is won on the course, but Helio Castroneves is trying to influence the outcome off the track.
Castroneves, who enters today’s Detroit Indy Grand Prix on Belle Isle 43 points behind driver points-leader Scott Dixon, has refined his strategy to include mind games with the New Zealander.
“I’m trying to do everything I can,” said Castroneves, who will start on the front row with Dixon after turning in the second-fastest qualifying lap Saturday of 102.412 mph. “We’re trying to get into his head. We’re having fun with it.”
Dixon had at least four brushes with the walls during the two days of practice sessions, but he earned his sixth pole position of the season after recording a qualifying lap of 103.090.
“We can clinch it Sunday,” said Dixon, who has won four times this year when starting from the pole. “It would mean a lot. There is a lot of pressure going on at the moment.”
Castroneves has excelled in the Detroit race, winning twice in the last three open-wheel races held on the 2.07-mile street circuit. Last year he was knocked out of the race on lap 67 when he was involved in a wreck with Tomas Scheckter.
James Stewart raced to his record 12th straight AMA Toyota Motocross Championship victory at the inaugural American Motocross Festival in Delmont, Pa., completing a perfect season for the Monster Energy Kawasaki rider.
Stewart, from Haines City, Fla., went 24-0 in motos this season to become only the second rider in the history of the sport to accomplish the feat. He also joined Ricky Carmichael as a Monster Energy/Kawasaki Triple Crown of Motocross winner.