Helio Castroneves is in a position of strength heading into the weekend's IndyCar Grand Prix of Baltimore. He's 39 points ahead of second-place Scott Dixon in the championship standings and can afford to race defensively rather than chase victories with four races remaining.
Castroneves has just a single victory (at Texas) but has run away with the championship based on the consistency of a 5.8 average finish with only a single result outside of the top-10. While he would like to win a few more races, it's not a pressing issue when the status quo is clearly getting the job done.
"We'll keep doing it exactly the way we started," Castroneves said on Friday. "It sounds like I'm being repetitive, but it's only because this is working. Why try something different right now? We're being consistent.
"Yes, you want to be the fastest guy all the time and you want to win races but at this stage, the momentum that we have has been pretty good and I don't mind collecting one or two points ahead of my competitors."
Castroneves added that he's not in the hunting position and that he's more focused on doing whatever it takes to land Roger Penske his first IndyCar championship since 2006 with Sam Hornish Jr.
The Penske veteran won two races last season but wasn't in championship contention. He says the difference between the two seasons is the consistency and that his championship rivals have had some bad luck in between winning races.
Dixon has won three times this season but also has six finishes outside of the top-10. James Hinchcliffe has also won thrice but is ninth in the standings and has mathematically been eliminated from the title battle. The difference has been consistency and Castroneves has it.
"I feel that my competitors are more up and down," Castroneves said. "And in the past few years, one or two guys stand out and probably that consistency would work out. But right now (they've) been off and let's keep our fingers crossed."
Castroneves is hunting his first championship as an Indy car driver.