Pataskala, Ohio (29 March 2023) – Meyer Shank Racing’s (MSR) INDYCAR program is looking for a Texas-sized helping of redemption this weekend, as the team looks to put a tough season opener in the rear-view mirror with Sunday afternoon’s PPG 375 at Texas Motor Speedway (Noon ET, NBC, SiriusXM Ch. 160).
The 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season opener lasted about four turns for both Simon Pagenaud and Helio Castroneves as they were involved in race-ending crashes on the opening lap at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
Now the Ohio-based team looks to press the reset button on the 2023 campaign as it heads to the high-speed 1.5-mile TMS oval for 250 laps of four-wheel warfare in the team’s signature AutoNation / SiriusXM Hondas.
Castroneves returns to a track where his name is etched four times in Victory Lane, second among IndyCar winners at the Texas venue. The Brazilian has wins in 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2013 to his credit and he has led in 12 different races for a total of 503 laps at the front. His stablemate Pagenaud has a pair of second-place finishes in Texas and will look to take that final step up the podium this weekend.
MSR has five starts on the TMS oval and has a history of qualifying well, earning three top-six starts in its five attempts, with a best race-day finish of seventh coming in 2021.
Aside from the racing action, MSR will be looking forward to a big weekend of activation from its long-time sponsor, AutoNation. Castroneves and Pagenaud will kick off the weekend with an AutoNation Dallas dealership appearance, paired with a private fundraiser for DRVPNK, in support of Wipe Out Kids Cancer. Explore ways to contribute here.
“AutoNation’s mission is to drive out cancer. Having partners like Meyer Shank Racing joining us in the fight is outstanding,” said Marc Cannon, AutoNation’s Executive Vice President and CXO. “As one of America’s most admired companies, our Associates, Customers and brand partners are the reason why we have made DRVPNK our singular philanthropic mission.”
The 250-lap PPG 375 will air on NBC on Sunday starting at Noon ET. Saturday’s qualifying will be shown live on Peacock beginning at Noon ET. SiriusXM will also host live IndyCar Radio coverage of both sessions on XM Ch. 160.
“I’m super excited to go to Texas, and that place brings me a lot of good memories and I’ve won there many times. Unfortunately, last year wasn’t a great race for us, however we know what we can do better and we’re really betting all of out chips on this one.”
“Texas is a great track for our cars and we had a fantastic showing last year. It’s a track that I have had great results at, but I’m still chasing a win there. Tire degradation is going to be a massive game and last year it was quite important. This year we have a new aero package from IndyCar with a bit more downforce which should help the tires hold on longer and also keep the pack a bit more together. For me, this race is the beginning of my year. St. Pete unfortunately did not meet our expectations with the crash at the start of our race, so now it’s time to get some momentum going.”