IndyCar: Helio Castroneves Fined $30,000 by Izod IndyCar Series

Eric SmithCorrespondent IIISeptember 27, 2011

MOTEGI, JAPAN - SEPTEMBER 17: Helio Castroneves of Brazil driver of the #3 Hitachi Team Penske Dallara Honda during practice for the IZOD IndyCar Series Indy Japan The Final at Twin Ring Motegi on September 17, 2011 in Motegi, Japan.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Team Penske driver Helio Castroneves was fined $30,000 by the Izod IndyCar series and put on probation for the remainder of the year for his Twitter comments following the Japan IndyCar race on September 18th, as reported by the Associated Press.

Castroneves was penalized in the race for passing for position under a local yellow on the last lap of the Indy Japan 300. He was penalized by chief steward Brian Barnhart for that maneuver and forced to finish at the tail-end of the lead lap in 22nd place instead of eighth.

He was already frustrated that Dario Franchitti didn't receive a drive-through penalty for his incident earlier in the race that allowed him to gain positions to catch Castroneves's teammate, Will Power, in the points battle. If Franchitti had been penalized, he would have been at least 30 seconds behind the car in front and would have surely finished deep in the field.

The penalty to Castroneves allowed Franchitti to gain two more crucial points by advancing him up a position in the finishing order.

Castroneves took his frustration to his social media outlet after the race. In a series of tweets on September 18th, he blasted IndyCar officials, resulting in the fine and probation.

Castroneves is the second of the Penske trio to be fined and put on probation this season. Will Power was fined $30,000 back in August and put on probation for his actions following the New Hampshire race.

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Both drivers will be able to work off the fines by doing public appearances for IndyCar throughout the year.