Japanese electronics company Hitachi has announced it will sponsor Team Penske driver and three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves for nine IndyCar Series races next season.
During the 2013 season Hitachi will serve as the primary sponsor on the Brazilian's number three car at IndyCar Series events at St. Petersburg, Sao Paulo, Detroit for two races, Iowa, Pocono, Toronto for two races and Sonoma.
Though financial terms of the agreement were not released, based on historical deals of a similar nature, Hitachi's commitment to Team Penske in 2013 is estimated to be worth US$2.1 million.
“Hitachi is a world-class company that proved to be a terrific partner for us this past season,” said team owner Roger Penske. “With the technical support Hitachi provides to Chevrolet in its IndyCar engine programme, this relationship represents a winning formula on many levels.”
Castroneves, who won the fifth season of the American reality TV show Dancing with the Stars, added, "I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to drive the Hitachi Team Penske car next season. We will race in the Hitachi colours at some great events in 2013, including my hometown race in Brazil, and it will be awesome to have them on board with the team.”
Hitachi Automotive Systems Americas vice president of sales and marketing Rob Sharpe said, "We’re very excited to be back with Team Penske in 2013 and we look forward to working with Helio and the number three car team. This valued partnership provides the Hitachi Group with the opportunity to grow our brand globally with a well-respected team built on a tradition of winning and excellence. It also creates great business-to-business and customer networking opportunities at some of the world’s premiere racing venues.”
Hitachi and Team Pesnke begain their relationship in 2012.