We are within a month of the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix.
This year, the race will be held the week immediately following the Indy 500, so there will be some good momentum coming into Race Week 2012.
Team Penske will be in the spotlight throughout the Grand Prix week because they’re expected to compete for the win and they’re running on the boss’s home turf.
Will Power has won three straight races and would like nothing more than to keep that streak going. Four wins in a row would mean a first career Indy 500 victory.
“We’re running Chevy engines this year and have been very successful,” said Power. “We’re hoping that we’re coming off an Indy 500 win and come into the Detroit Grand Prix as a 500 winner, and then hopefully winning that too.”
While Power may sound a little greedy, when you’re achieving as much as he is this season, it’s understandable.
“He’s on a roll,” said his teammate Ryan Briscoe. “He’s won the last three races, which is unbelievable. And he’s got the lead in the championship. He’s doing a good job, but if I can take the attention away by winning the 500, he can win the next three after that as well.”
Briscoe and Power still don’t have the name recognition and star power of Helio Castroneves, a three-time Indy 500 champion who has also won twice in Detroit.
Castroneves won the season opening race in Homestead, FL and is eager to get back to Belle Isle, a place he has enjoyed success in the past.
“For any kind of person, especially a driver, when you’re going to a place where you’ve had success in the past, it’s always great,” said Castroneves. “It brings great memories. You know where you need to go, what areas you need to do what. It’s a place that brings me great stuff. Great thinking about it. Good, positive energy.”
Roger Penske, the team owner and driving force behind the return of Indy Car racing to Detroit, casts a long shadow that in many ways demands perfection from his drivers.
“The guy, he’s on it,” said Castroneves. “He’s not only a great promoter, he knows how to do it. He’s also our boss, so it doesn’t hurt when you do well in his territory.”
WXYZ is the official station of the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix. Stay with us and bookmark the sports page at WXYZ.com for the latest racing headlines as the Indy Car Series returns to Michigan for the first time since 2008.
The Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix will be run Sunday, June 3 and aired live on WXYZ.
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