2015 was not a bad year for Penske Racing. In February, Joey Logano won the Daytona 500, only Penske’s second Daytona win. Joey also went on to dominate the Chase, winning three races in a row, but a feud with Matt Kenseth knocked Joey out of championship contention. And so it was that Penske missed out on the 2015 Sprint Cup. Brad Keselowski won the Cup for Roger in 2012, so far Penske Racing’s only NASCAR championship. After the 2015 season, this car was retired and signed by the entire crew who built it.
MotoIQ readers should recognize this Dallara DW-12 as it received a LOT of coverage from us a year ago. This is Juan Pablo Montoya’s 2015 Indy 500 winning car. It is rare that a single team can win the two biggest races in America…much less in the same year! But Penske pulled it off in 2015. That said, there is always a bigger fish in the sea: In 2011 Ganassi Racing won the Indy 500, the Daytona 500, the 24 Hours of Daytona, AND the Brickyard 400…all in the same season! Get to it Roger!
Back in the glory days of CART, this is the trophy everyone fought for: the PPG Cup. Penske brought it home a total of 10 times (along with 4 more successive titles in the modern IRL/IndyCar series). Team Penske has also won 16 Indy 500s, a record no other team even comes close to. Another stunning record is the 183 USAC/CART/IRL/IndyCar race wins Team Penske has scored. As of writing, Penske has recorded 441 race wins, 505 pole positions, and 29 championships to its name in all of the various forms of racing it has entered. Scuderia Ferrari is one of the only racing teams that can get close to Penske…and they're a full blown OEM with an extra 16 years to rack 'em up!
2016 has been a great year for Penske. While his team did not win the Indy 500, his cars finished 1-2-3 in the IndyCar championship. Both Penske cars are in the Chase and have a shot at taking home the Cup. If Penske can win the Sprint Cup and the Verizon IndyCar championship, it will be a great way of capping off the 50th anniversary celebrations. But what does the future hold for Penske Racing? Well unfortunately it will not include JPM in an IndyCar: that seat has been handed to American Josef Newgarden. This gives Penske the top 4 drivers from the 2016 IndyCar season. Newgarden is the latest in a long line of legendary drivers who have worn the Team Penske colors.
JPM isn’t out completely though: there are rumors that Penske will reform his sports car team tackle the IMSA series and possibly even LeMans. JPM could be hired to lead the new sports car team. And of course Penske still has a great pair of drivers and cars in NASCAR, being the regular front runner for Ford in the series.
All of this success has not just fallen into Roger Penske’s lap. He is a tireless worker who expects 100% effort from all of his employees. Every member of Penske’s enterprise, be it Penske Racing, Penske Rental trucks, Detroit Diesel, or a string of Penske car dealerships, knows the mantra of Roger Penske: Effort Equals Results. Work hard, hire the best people, and the results will come. Roger Penske is the epitome of the American Dream and for 50 years has been proving that when you put in the work, the success will follow.