Meyer Shank Racing team co-owner Mike Shank says that it is very important to him to have a two car programme in the NTT IndyCar Series. It was announced on Tuesday that Meyer Shank Racing will field a two car team in 2021 with Helio Castroneves joining Jack Harvey for a partial six race schedule next season.
Speaking to Paddock Eye during the announcement via Zoom, Shank said:
It’s very important. This is part of the grand plan that Jim and I when we sat down three years ago said that we want to do. We want to do it correctly, like we’ve said all along here.
You know, we’re going to do two INDYCARs and one prototype car this year. This is exactly the size of business that Jim and I want to be. Jim can speak for himself here. We have plenty of work. We’re building a new shop. We have 45 people working for us now, which is not a little team anymore.
Just so many positive things that have happened since Jim and I came together. I don’t even know what to say. But this is just a natural evolution.
Jim and I like to sit and have a beer at the end of each day at the 500 in front of our motor homes, and to have two opportunities to sit and have a beer like that, that’s just perfect for me. I don’t know about you, Jim.
JIM MEYER: Yeah, I couldn’t agree more. You know, at this point with our investment, we have in my opinion a huge new shop under construction in Ohio that we broke ground on about eight weeks ago that we’re thrilled to accommodate the size of our new program. We wouldn’t be building that if we weren’t in this for the long-term.
And I just — I haven’t said it, we’re thrilled to have Helio. I think Mike summed it up. We’re just kind of thinking — we think we got lucky, and we think he’s going to be a tremendous partner for Jack. We’re really pleased with our — but we took a chance on Jack. Funny story, when Jack and I first met, we took a chance with Jack. We’re thrilled with his progress, and I think 2021 is going to be a really, really outstanding year for us with both the No. 60 and the No. 6 car.
Helio Catroneves, who has spent the last 20 years with Team Penske also spoke to Paddock Eye during Tuesday’s conference call saying:
Yeah, it’s starting out, again, no question, but it’s starting different. When I started 10 years ago I had no experience, and now I know exactly what I need, I know exactly what I want and I see the commitment that the entire organization is ready to do it. That’s not only showing me the light at the end of the tunnel but it pumps me up to go out there and probably the guys are going to say get out of here at one point because I’m going to be like digging everything I can, because it’s what I love. That’s the only thing I know how to do is drive cars, and that’s part of my passion, and that’s what I’m looking forward to.
It’s great when you rejuvenate. It’s great when you have something different and something new, but you see everyone putting the efforts together.
Man, this is going to be great.
Castroneves will compete in the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge next May with Meyer Shank Racing as he attempts to win his fourth Indianapolis 500 crown.