Montoya to rejoin Penske for Indy 500 bid

2016-11-02 14:08
Juan Pablo Montoya (File)

Chicago - Former Formula One star Juan Pablo Montoya will rejoin Roger Penske with an entry in next year's Indianapolis 500, team president Tim Cindric said on  Tuesday.

The 40-year-old Colombian, bumped from the Penske Racing line-up when American Josef Newgarden was signed to replace him next year, has a one-race deal to seek his third Indy 500 crown after wins in the IndyCar oval classic in 2000 and 2015.

Montoya's car will give Penske Racing a record five cars in the race, including the four top finishers in this year's IndyCar drivers' standings.

IndyCar season champion Simon Pagenaud of France, runner-up Will Power of Australia, Brazilian three-time Indy 500 champion and third-place finisher Helio Castroneves and Newgarden have full-season rides.

Montoya, a winner in 15 of 91 IndyCar starts over five seasons, drove for Ganassi Racing in 1999-2000 and for Penske from 2014-2016 with F1 and US stock car stints in between.

Montoya's most recent win came in this year's season opener at St. Petersburg, Florida.

After being dropped by Penske, Montoya explored other teams but decided to return to Penske for a strong chance at a third Indy 500 title.

"He didn't want to leave the team but wanted to see what else was out there," Cindric said.

"He told me the best opportunity was to run Indy with Team Penske.

"The fact we're going to stay together and try to win Indy together speaks about our relationship."

Read more on:    indy 500

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