Helio Castroneves is returning to full-time status in the NTT IndyCar series next season. Meyer Shank Racing announced today that the four-time Indianapolis 500 winner will drive the No. 06 Honda as the team expands to two full-time entries. The last time Castroneves competed in the series as a full-time driver was with Team Penske in 2017 when he finished 4th in the championship after earning three podium finishes during the season, including a race win at Iowa Speedway.
The more surprising nugget in today’s release was with current full-time driver Jack Harvey. While the team has renewed with their partners on the No. 60 Honda, there will be a different driver in that seat next season. It has been reported that while Harvey and the team were set to finalize a deal, Harvey had a change of heart and will be moving on next year, possibly to RLL Racing, per RACER. The full press release from today is below.
[Meyer Shank Racing Press Release]
Today, Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) announced that Helio Castroneves will return for a full NTT INDYCAR series season in 2022 and will attempt to be the first five-time Indianapolis 500 winner in the sport’s history as he is set to pilot the No. 06 AutoNation/ SiriusXM Honda.
“Drive for Five” is the 2022 theme as MSR, AutoNation and SiriusXM go for the record books.
“I am thrilled to get the chance to go for a fifth Indianapolis 500 win, and so excited to fight for the INDYCAR championship again with a full season of races next year with Meyer Shank Racing,” said Castroneves. “Mike (Shank) and Jim (Meyer) have developed some incredible sponsorships with AutoNation and SiriusXM, and having that support is critical. I have been missing racing in INDYCAR full time so much! So I cannot wait to get a head start on next year with some strong races to finish this season.”
It didn’t take long for MSR and Castroneves to show their synergy as the Brazilian went on to win the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500. The victory was historical on many levels – the first race where fans were back at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Castroneves’ record-setting fourth Indianapolis 500 victory, and the first-ever INDYCAR Series win for MSR.
Meyer Shank Racing continues to deliver on its plan for success. MSR went from a one-off Indianapolis 500 outing to an Indianapolis 500 winning team. And now, in their fifth year, the INDYCAR team will continue that plan with two full-season entries starting in 2022.
MSR also announced that the No. 60 AutoNation/ SiriusXM Honda, which has been driven by Jack Harvey for the past few seasons, has been renewed for 2 years, with a new pilot. The team is excited to continue its relationship with long-time sponsors AutoNation and SiriusXM, and welcome a dynamic new driver, who will be announced soon.
“We wish Jack much success and we know he will continue to be a driver to watch,” said MSR co-owner, Mike Shank. “MSR is excited to have Helio on the 06 car next season and we’re looking forward to adding a driver, who will turn heads in the 60 car.”
The expansion of the team would not be possible without AutoNation and SiriusXM which have supported MSR since its first outing at the 2017 Indianapolis 500. In addition, Liberty Media’s minority investment in Meyer Shank Racing – which is attributed to the Formula One Group – in 2020 has shown the great potential that the team has for future motorsport endeavors.
In just 42 INDYCAR Series races, MSR has collected an Indianapolis 500 victory, two podiums, two-front row starts, and 12 top ten finishes. In addition to the team’s on track accomplishments, MSR is also in the final stages of building a brand new 43,000 sq. ft. shop in Pataskala, Ohio.
“There are so many people around us that have given us the opportunity to expand to two full-season entries for next year,” said Mike Shank. “My partner Jim Meyer and I have done this in a way that makes sense for us. I am very excited to have Helio (Castroneves) onboard for the 2022 season and I think there will be a lot of excitement around our second driver when we make that announcement as well.”