Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Simon Pagenaud is aiming to claim a prize that has alluded him so far, victory in the most famous motor race in the world, the Indianapolis 500.
The Frenchman took victory at the Brickyard last season on his to the title winning the Grand Prix of Indianapolis last May.
Fast forward to 2017, Pagenaud will hatve an extra competitor at Team Penske with Juan Pablo Montoya, a two time Indianapolis 500 winner returning to the outfit for the month of May.
Pagenaud is joined at the team this season by Josef Newgarden who has made a great start to his new chapter at the Penske outfit having replaced Juan Pablo Montoya.
Speaking to IndyCar.com about the Indianapolis 500, Pagenaud commented by saying:
When it’s your time, it’s your time. “I’m learning the roots of this track. Every year, I come with more knowledge. Every year, I feel more confident. Every year, I feel like it’s getting closer. Every year, I feel like I understand the game better.
“It’s a bit of a maze, but there’s no end to it. At this point, I feel like we’ve got good cars with the best team. Is it going to be this year? Is it going to be next year? I don’t know. But I’m certainly feeling like I’m getting closer.
Pagenaud went on to say:
(At) Team Penske, the 500 is a big highlight of the year,” he said. “We want to regain the crown, so we’re working really hard. The engineers are working really hard at finding extra speed. That’s what we’re here for, validating what they found in the labs basically and trying to get a good direction for the month of May.
Pagenaud heads to the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach this weekend for round two of the championship in second place in the championship having finished on the podium in second place behind winner Sebastien Bourdais.