Helio Castroneves entered Carb Day’s pit stop competition with a winning record and did not disappoint, cruising through Round 2 and the semi-finals before beating Mikhail Aleshin in the final round.
Round 1 matchups included Matt Brabham and Ryan Hunter-Reay, Charlie Kimball and Graham Rahal, Carlos Munoz and Sage Karam, and Mikhail Aleshin and Takuma Sato. Hunter-Reay, Rahal, Munoz and Aleshin advanced to Round 2.
The second round began with Hunter-Reay taking on Indianapolis 500 pole sitter James Hinchcliffe with the Andretti Autosport driver prevailing.
Rahal took to pit lane next to take on Team Penske’s Helio Castroneves. The No. 3 crew performed the fastest pit stop of the day at 12.332 seconds to advance Castroneves to the semi-finals.
Juan Pablo Montoya and Carlos Munoz were the next matchup in Round 2 with both teams bobbling. Montoya stalled on the start while Munoz’s team had a slow pit stop, however the stall was too long for the No. 2 crew to overcome and the No. 26 crew won the round by almost five seconds.
The final matchup of Round 2 was Aleshin versus Scott Dixon. The No. 7 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports crew beat the No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing team by just one-tenth of a second, one of the closest margins of the day.
The winners of Round 2 met up in the semi-final round with Castroneves taking on Hunter-Reay and Munoz battling Aleshin to for the chance to race in the final round. Castroneves and crew easily advanced, beating Hunter-Reay’s team by 0.4 seconds while Aleshin had a similar experience with Munoz, beating the Columbian driver by almost 0.7 seconds.
In the final round, it was Honda versus Chevrolet as Aleshin took on Castroneves. With Aleshin smoking his tires on the start and overshooting his line, Castroneves easily took the pit stop competition victory by seven seconds over the competitive Russian driver, Castroneves’ ninth win and Team Penske’s 16th.
The pit stop competition marked the final on-track activity at Indianapolis Motor Speedway until the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil with the green flag expected at 12:04 p.m. EDT on Sunday.