Helio Castroneves says that he was shocked to learn that his car had failed a technical inspection following his win at Texas last week, and blamed the error on the demands of IndyCar's intense mid-season schedule.
Team Penske was fined and docked entrant points after the underside of Castroneves' car was found to be outside of the permitted dimensions, although Castroneves himself was not penalized.
The Brazilian said that the current stretch of six races in seven weekends, with the added load of the teams having to constantly swap the cars between road/street course and oval specification, was the likely cause of the problem, and argued that it should not overshadow his win.
"I was very shocked, because the team did an absolutely amazing job," he said. "Unfortunately, it was a little mistake that at times apply because the schedule has been very busy for everyone. Maybe [things] like that happen just because people are so tired from turning [the cars] from road course to oval [spec].
"I would not allow this scenario to outshine what we did because that [mistake] actually made my car go slower."
Castroneves also reacted to criticism that the Texas race was processional, suggesting that the TV producers failed to capture a lot of the action.
"There was a lot of passing," he said. "Unfortunately, editing on the race probably didn't catch that. I mean, I watched the race afterwards. I think the producer missed a lot of passing."