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July 17, 2015

Helio Castroneves

Juan Pablo Montoya

Simon Pagenaud

Will Power

THE MODERATOR:  We'll get started with today's Verizon IndyCar Series media availability.  We are pleased to be joined by the four drivers of Team Penske, Juan Montoya, Will Power, Helio Castroneves and Simon Pagenaud. 
Juan, you've carried the points lead since the beginning of the season.  What's your mentality heading into the final few races.
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA:  We've got to keep doing what we've been doing.  What we've been doing has been working.  We've been competitive every week.  That's the main goal.  You got to be good, run a smart race and see what happens. 
I think as a team we've been doing a really good job all year.  Hopefully we can get more wins and some more good results. 
THE MODERATOR:  Will, suffering a little bit of a setback with last week's finish in Milwaukee.  You've won pole here before.  You finished well here before.  What is your take entering the weekend? 
WILL POWER:  Yeah, I mean, we definitely got to have four pretty good races to have a shot there at the end.  That's what the aim is. 
Juan's had a very smooth run all year.  I can't worry about what's going to happen with him.  Obviously we just got to focus on our job and see if we can close that gap, be somewhat aggressive.  Obviously you're in a position now to be that way.  Just, yeah, that's my plan. 
THE MODERATOR:  Simon, with the best start of eighth, best finish of fifth.  The Verizon IndyCar Series has rivalries between teams, between Penske, Ganassi and Andretti.  Andretti has won six of eight races here.  Do you look at them as your lead rivals heading into the weekend? 
SIMON PAGENAUD:  It's an interesting question.  It's hard to say with the aero kits on the Chevy side and the Honda side.  There's a few unknowns we don't have any idea about quite yet.  We'll know better in practice this afternoon. 
They've certainly been really strong.  Marco has been really strong here.  Hunter-Reay as well. 
No reason for us not to be just as competitive.  We've shown a lot of strength on every track.  It's interesting working all four of us together.  We've managed to extract a lot out of it. 
It's going to be an interesting weekend certainly.  Looking forward to a night race actually. 
THE MODERATOR:  Helio, you've won pole and come closest to a win with a best finish of second.  Team Penske hasn't won a race here.  What is it going to take to turn that around? 
HELIO CASTRONEVES:  Last year we had a great shot.  We have to be there at the end.  Obviously new tires ended up paying off with only 10 laps to go.  In this case we got to just keep doing what we're doing. 
Certainly we have not only good setups, good engineers, good equipment, good guys, we just got to be there in the end. 
It's one of those places you have everything going your way, and all of a sudden something happens and take that way. 
But at this point I feel that all four of us, we're going to have a great chance to be in first place here. 
THE MODERATOR:  Questions from the media. 

Q.  Two months ago you won Indianapolis.  This is a different racetrack.  What are the key factors to be successful here at Iowa? 
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA:  I think we have to wait and see how the kits compare, the Chevy against the Honda, who has the upper hand here. 
To be honest, we have to do what we do every week, do a good job in practice. 
I think one of the harder things is we didn't do any short track, oval testing at all.  Since Iowa last year, we haven't been an oval till Milwaukee practice.  That was a little bit hard for me personally.  I would have loved to see some testing, not days, but at least a day of testing, you know what I mean.  We could have run a little longer in Milwaukee.  Same for everybody, I guess. 
We'll see.  I think we learned our lesson last week.  We were not as good as we needed to be as a team.  We got a little different approach this weekend and see what happens. 

Q.  It seems so unnatural to run these type of cars as fast as you go on essentially a one-mile short track.  In terms of the challenge that presents, how difficult is this track, how intense is that, compared to anywhere else you go, including Indianapolis? 
WILL POWER:  Yeah, it is strange the way it's wide open around a short track like this.  It's got so much downforce.  Yeah, it's actually really physical because of that.  The steering's heavy.  It's like a weight on a string, right?  You don't want it to break because it definitely would hurt. 
But, yeah, I think the body kit as it is, it's probably hard in turbulent air.  Be harder than last year because there's so many winglets all over the cars.  Maybe it will be difficult to pass. 
It's really difficult to tell when you don't test.  You know, we'll see. 
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA:  We all think the same thing.  I thought Milwaukee was a lot more physical than I expected, to be honest.  But it was okay.  I think here is going to be harder.  I think the upside here is you can actually run two different groups.  That might help a little bit.  But we'll see. 
SIMON PAGENAUD:  It's just super physical, so certainly you might see people falling out by the end of the race.  I remember last year really having a tough time at the end of the race.  Now with more downforce, it might be even more the case. 
Might be interesting to see how it goes, you know, how your car changes throughout the night as well.  I think with the temperature dropping, it might change dramatically the balance people have. 
HELIO CASTRONEVES:  Yeah, the same. 
THE MODERATOR:  Gentlemen, thank you very much.  Good luck in practice today. 

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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