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Montoya won seven races in CART and the Indy 500 in his two seasons competing in open wheel with Ganassi. Their run together also included the 1999 CART championship. He then moved to Formula One, where he spent six seasons before abruptly quitting to return to the United States to compete in NASCAR. He reunited with Ganassi, but the results never came.

Montoya won one Nationwide race in 2007, and had two Sprint Cup victories in 253 career starts. His last win in NASCAR was in 2010, a year after he made the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship and finished a career-best eighth in the standings.

At a fan event prior to his final NASCAR race earlier this month at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Montoya was blunt about his hopes for his move to IndyCar _ “I’m tired of sucking,” he said.

He’ll have an opportunity to be competitive with Penske, a consistent contender in IndyCar for both the series championship and at the Indy 500.

“He told us he’d drive anything in the building as long as it could win,” Penske team President Tim Cindric said at Sebring. “He’s a quick learner, for sure. I think the difference is going to be getting him to understand what it takes to win … I don’t care who you are, it’s going to take some time to learn those nuances.

“One strength that Juan has is that he’s mentally tough. He doesn’t let the little things bother him much. I think he takes a pretty simple approach and I think that could pay off for him in the series.”

Montoya said he’s not sure yet how he’ll define success in IndyCar.

“Do I want to win? Of course I want to win. Do I want to do the best I can? Yeah. How good is that going to be? I don’t know,” he said. “You have to beat Will, who is one of the fastest guys in the series. Helio has a ton of experience. I ran against him when I won the championship, and he’s still doing it.

“For them to get in the car every day it’s no big deal. This is their home, and I need to make this my home.”

Power, winner of 19 races since 2007 and a three-time runner-up in the IndyCar championship race, believes Montoya will be a strong addition to the Penske organization. Power hopes he can measure his own ability against Montoya.

“It’s cool to be a teammate to a guy that was successful in Formula One. I’ve been wanting someone like that to go up against and see where I’m at,” Power said. “When I was younger he was one of the guys I looked at as the best when I was trying to get to that level. Even in CART, when you look at some of those qualifying laps at Detroit, he was a very fast solid good racer and driver.”

Cindric is hopeful Montoya can push both Power and Castroneves and get Penske another championship. Penske’s last IndyCar title was in 2006 with Sam Hornish Jr., and the team hasn’t won the Indy 500 since Castroneves in 2009.

Castroneves finished second to champion Scott Dixon this year, and Power was runner-up in 2010 through 2012.

“For us a team, we have to figure out how to put a whole season together,” Cindric said. “There hasn’t been a race in the last how many years that I didn’t feel like we couldn’t win. Trying to understand that championship mentality is something we failed the last four, five, six years. We should have half the championships from that span, but we don’t.

“Maybe Juan can bring us that kind of mentality. He’s learned a lot from his transition from Formula One to NASCAR. He hasn’t had a successful teammate and we’re going to be able to give him a gauge.”