Penske has been involved with IndyCar racing since 1968, when they first fielded a stock block-powered Eagle with Mark Donohue. The team first competed at Indianapolis in 1969, and within three years had become the team to beat, winning the race with Donohue in 1972. In 1978, Roger Penske along with Pat Patrick, Dan Gurney, and several other team owners who had been participating in USAC events involving cars known as Champ Cars and IndyCars formed CART, Champion Auto Racing Teams. As of 2006, Penske Racing has won the Indianapolis 500 14 times, won the Indianapolis 500 pole position 13 times, as well as 124 open wheel wins in CART and IRL and 11 open wheel championships.
In 2001, Team Penske marked its return to Indy 500 after a five year absence due to the open wheel split after the 1995 CART season. Later in 2001 Roger Penske announced he would leave CART for the Indy Racing League.
Team Penske currently fields two cars, driven by Hélio Castroneves and Sam Hornish, Jr.. Castroneves has won the Indianapolis 500 twice (2001 and 2002), as well as other CART and IRL races with Marlboro Team Penske. Sam Hornish, Jr. is the 2006 Indianapolis 500 winner and the (2001, 2002, and 2006) Indy Racing League Champion, with 15 IRL Wins. His 2001 and 2002 championships were with Panther Racing, prior to joining Penske.
The open-wheel racing portion of Penske Racing had been based in Reading, Pennsylvania since 1973. On October 31, 2005, Penske Racing announced after the 2006 IRL season, they will consolidate IRL and NASCAR operations at the team's Mooresville North Carolina facility ; with the flooding in Pennsylvania in 2006, the team's operations have been moved to Mooresville earlier than expected.
Also in late 2005, Penske Racing announced primary sponsor Marlboro, which had been a sponsor with Penske Racing since 1990, and primary sponsor of all Penske open-wheel racing cars since 1991, was leaving because of tobacco legislation. For 2007, the IRL cars will carry joint sponsorship from Mobil 1 and Kodak.
Al Unser Jr: [link]