While Team Penske may not have been the first to use the canary yellow paint job for its cars, it likely did the most to popularize it. Four-time Indy 500 winner Rick Mears drove the Pennzoil-sponsored car and won the race in 1984 and 1988 (pictured above) with it.
For 2014, the No. 3 Chevrolet of three-time Indy winner Helio Castroneves gets the historic guise, and he has a lot riding on it. If Castroneves triumphs this year, he ties Mears with four victories in the race. The two drivers have brought Roger Penske's teams 7 of their 15 Indy 500 wins. Scroll down to read the full announcement from the team.
May 8, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - May 8, 2014 – Today, Pennzoil announced the return of an iconic look for its brand in the Verizon IndyCar Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The "Yellow Submarine" design scheme launches a month-long schedule of activities celebrating the launch of Pennzoil Platinum® and Pennzoil Ultra Platinum™ Full Synthetic motor oils with PurePlus™ Technology. PurePlus™ Technology is a patented, revolutionary process that converts pure natural gas into a first-of-its-kind, high quality full synthetic base oil. The Pennzoil Platinum line of products made with PurePlus™ Technology has been 40 years in the making.
"Pennzoil is paving the way for our industry by offering modern and innovative synthetic motor oils made from natural gas," explains Rusty Barron, Vice President of Marketing, Pennzoil. "What we like about PurePlus Technology is that it starts with a base of pure, crystal clear base oil made from natural gas with fewer of the impurities found in crude oil, which is the traditional base for many other conventional and synthetic motor oils. We are pleased to honor the history of Pennzoil in IndyCar and at the Indianapolis 500 with the "Yellow Submarine".
Pennzoil presence in the IndyCar Series began in the 1930's with Russell Snowberger, and based on his success, more IndyCar drivers began to use Pennzoil racing oil in their race cars. In 1979, Pennzoil joined Johnny Rutherford and the team painted the Pennzoil-sponsored car bright yellow. The look was so bright and distinctive, fans and competitors nicknamed it the "Yellow Submarine." The very next year, Johnny Rutherford took the "Yellow Submarine" to victory lane at Indy for the first time.
After joining Team Penske in 1983, Pennzoil won two Indianapolis 500 races (1984 and 1988) in a similar yellow, black and red scheme with legendary driver Rick Mears behind the wheel. Mears, who still consults with Team Penske in multiple roles, is one of only three drivers to own four Indy 500 crowns.
The iconic scheme will return for the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500 with Team Penske on the No. 3 Chevrolet driven by three-time Indy 500 champion, Helio Castroneves. "My favorite memory of the Yellow Submarine is winning the Indy 500," stated Castroneves when asked about the car of the past. "I remember Rick Mears going down the straightaway and into turn one. You could spot the car – anywhere.....but I am going to drive the car! What a tradition and what a great honor."
Mears and Castroneves have combined for seven of Roger Penske's record 15 Indianapolis 500 victories. When Mears retired in 1992, he continued to work with Team Penske as a driver coach and consultant, a role he still fills today. Castroneves will be looking to tie Mears for the most wins at the Brickyard with a victory in 2014, and in his iconic yellow and red paint scheme.
"We are honored that Pennzoil is bringing a part of their heritage and the heritage of Team Penske back to life to help tell the story of their amazing advancements in motor oil technology," said Roger Penske, Founder and Chairman of Penske Corporation. "I have been around cars my entire life. This is the most exciting and innovative advancement in motor oil in decades. It's going to be a real game changer."
PurePlus™ Base Oil is found in many custom Pennzoil racing oils. Pennzoil Ultra Platinum Full Synthetic motor oil with PurePlus™ Technology 0W-40 motor oil is the exact same oil that Team Penske uses right-out-of-the-bottle in the Verizon IndyCar Series.
"Pennzoil is redefining the way consumers look at the motor oil category," said Barron. "Pennzoil Platinum motor oils with PurePlus Technology feature the capabilities to evolve with current vehicle technology to offer complete protection for today's engines."
Cutting edge PurePlus™ Technology is running under the hood of Pennzoil motorsports technical partners across NASCAR™, IndyCar™ and the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Series. Pennzoil motorsports sponsorships maximize performance and engine reliability for the teams and will help them push the limits in 2014.
For more detail on the Pennzoil Platinum Full Synthetic motor oils with PurePlus™ Technology line of motor oils and product availability, visit www.Pennzoil.com. To stay up-to-date on the latest activities, be sure to 'Like' the official Pennzoil Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/Pennzoil) and follow Pennzoil on Twitter (www.twitter.com/Pennzoil) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/Pennzoil).