The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

July 4, 2014

IndyCar drivers divided by World Cup

LONG POND — While America celebrates its 238th birthday amid passionate patriotic celebrations, two IndyCar drivers — Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya and Brazilian Helio Castroneves — will seek to celebrate a World Cup soccer win.

Colombia and Brazil meet today with the winner advancing to face the winner of France and Germany in the final four.

“C’mon, it’s Brazil!” Castroneves said when asked who would win. “We are destined to win this because we haven’t lost on home turf since 2002. How are you going to stop (Brazilian players) Neymar and Hulk now?”

Castroneves comes into Sunday’s race second in the point standings. The three-time Indy 500 winner is looking for his first series title.

“We are the host country and we have been the best in the world for many years now,” Castroneves added. “Colombia is playing well, but I don’t think they are quite ready to challenge the big boys.”

Montoya, who returned to IndyCar this season for the first time in 13 years, believes there are some kinks in the armor of the Brazilian team.

“He might not admit it, but Helio knows in the back of his mind that Brazil was lucky to beat Chile,” Montoya said. “They will need more than luck against Colombia. I really think Colombia is playing the best soccer of anyone in the world right now.”

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