(CBS Local) – Race week has finally arrived. The Superstar Racing Experience begins Saturday, June 12 at Stafford Highway in Connecticut. Among the racers taking to the track in new cars for the first time is this year’s Indy 500 winner, Helio Castroneves.
“I’m a huge fan of this format and I believe it’s going to be great for everyone,” Castroneves told reporters on a media call Monday.
The 46-year-old Castroneves has raced just twice this year and he was the winner of both firsts taking a Rolex 24 at Daytona before winning at Indy. The Brazilian racer cleared up that record on Wednesday and said he will need to continue that winning streak in the SRX.
“Well, I need to maintain the score or percentage or I will be in trouble. When they say, ‘oh you’re a veteran, you can do it’. I know I’m a veteran but I’m still learning,” Castroneves said. “This will be my first time running this type of car on completely different tracks and it will be interesting to see. I’m very excited about the SRX. “
After the victory at Indy, Castroneves’ participation in SRX brings greater attention to the new series than before. Fans who have been curious to see how the racers will perform and what the cars will look like on these tracks, now also have the chance to watch the reigning Indy 500 champion adapt like how.
“We continue to consider the car will have to do a lot of different things… I don’t really want to reinvent the wheel. I want to use a lot of proven pieces from other vehicles.”@SRXRacing Co-creation @RayEvernham shows the process of creating the SRX car. pic.twitter.com/XkzIevKXu2
– CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) June 7, 2021
“Winning the Indy 500 has brought a lot of attention and I am very happy and with a new series starting, we will attract a lot of attention on that. Castroneves said. “We are talking about great former champions who have done amazing things in motorsport against each other. It’s because we’re all passionate about racing that we’re all doing this. “
While Castroneves is a reigning champion, he’s not the only driver with championship pedigree who will battle it out at Stafford on Saturday. Co-creator Tony Stewart stars Paul Tracy, Bobby Labonte, Willy T. Ribbs, and fellow Castroneves Tony Kanaan, among others. Castroneves says that while all riders can be friendly off the track, once things start to go well, fans will see that competitive nature return quickly.
“Even though we are friends and we can relax a little now, as soon as you put on your helmet, believe me, there is no friendship. We will go for it. And I believe that’s where you get to see the real race. That’s for sure they’ll have great entertainment,” said Castroneves.
The engines will kick off this Saturday, June 12 for the first SRX race at Stafford Speedway with the CBS Television Network broadcasting the entire race at 8 p.m. Eastern Time and streaming on Paramount +.