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Castroneves to Replace Blomqvist for Next Two IndyCar Races – Motorsports Tribune

Castroneves to Replace Blomqvist for Next Two IndyCar Races – Motorsports Tribune

By David Morgan, Associate Editor

Fresh off his one-off appearance in the Indianapolis 500, Helio Castroneves will get to spend some more time behind the wheel, taking over driving duties for the No. 66 Meyer-Shank Racing Honda for the next two races.

On Wednesday, the team, which Castroneves is part owner, announced that the regular driver for that car, rookie Tom Blomqvist, would be stepping aside for Detroit and Road America, with the four-time Indy 500 champion substituting for him.

In a team release, Meyer-Shank called the decision to pull Blomqvist for the next two races “mutual” between driver and team. The team added that Blomqvist will still remain at MSR as they evaluate their next move.

“Making this decision was by far the hardest one we have had to make,” said MSR co-owner, Mike Shank.

“Tom is 100% still a part of the MSR family and will remain a part of the team for the rest of the season. The decision was not made lightly and after much discussion with Tom, and with back-to-back races coming up, we have decided to have Helio drive in Detroit and at Road America.” 

Blomqvist, a sports car ace that captured back-to back victories in the Rolex 24 at Daytona and won the IMSA championship for Meyer-Shank, moved over to the IndyCar program part-time in 2023 before going full-time in 2024.

Through the first five races of the season, his best finish came with a 15th place result in the season opener at St. Petersburg, with just one additional finish in the top-20 at Barber Motorsports Park, leaving him 24th in points – next to last among drivers that have started every race this season.

In his first Indy 500 start last Sunday, Blomqvist was involved in a crash on the opening lap in which he spun his car in Turn 1, triggering a multi-car crash. He would be credited with a 31st place finish.

“It is fair to say that the last couple of days have been some of the hardest in my career,” said Blomqvist.

“Everyone who knows me knows how much I love being a part of the MSR family and together we have enjoyed some amazing successes and victories. I am looking forward to remaining part of the MSR family and contributing to the MSR vision as we chase down further successes in the future.”

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