Juan Pablo Montoya: “The problem is we were good too late”

Juan Pablo Montoya finished sixth in the Indy 500 - Credit: Mike Harding / IndyCar

Juan Pablo Montoya secured a top six finish in the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday despite running out of fuel ahead of his first stint, but felt he had a really competitive car throughout the month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

However, he did rue that his strong race pace on Sunday came too late in the day to challenge for the victory, with the Team Penske driver spending too much time embroiled in the midfield pack before working his way forward to be in contention.

Montoya believes he had the same kind of pace as team-mate Helio Castroneves, who finished second to Takuma Sato on Sunday, and he felt that he was the only other Chevrolet-powered driver to stay in the hunt against the tough Honda contingent.

“Honestly, I thought it was really good all month; we were really strong,” said Montoya to RACER. “At the beginning out of the race, I don’t think a lot of people even noticed we ran out of gas. It’s kind of sad.

“At the end, we were pretty close. We were right there. The problem is we were good too late. I felt I was probably as strong as Helio, but being as strong as Helio wouldn’t give you anything, would it?

“I finished sixth right there with them; I was the only other Chevy that could keep up with them. But the problem is nobody had anything for the Hondas. It’s OK. Some years it’s been the other way. A couple of years ago when I won, it was the other way. It goes in cycles.”