This may be hard for you to believe, but apparently some people are getting a little tired of the repetitiveness of Helio Castroneves and his post race enthusiasm. ESPN's John Oreovicz, who has been around Helio for over a decade, has proclaimed himself "tired of Helio Castroneves' over-the-top -- some might say forced or fake -- enthusiasm".
His exuberant personality hasn't changed since then, and people who are close to him say that's the way he has always been.I'm guessing the reason he didn't mention my personal favorite, "fun-TASTIC!", is because that one NEVER gets old.
In fact, a few years ago, Helio's longtime friend Tony Kanaan jokingly (I think) even listed Castroneves as his "Favorite Actor" in a press-kit bio.
But that's no excuse for the way Helio makes the EXACT same speech after every win -- bouncing off the walls like a kid who downed a 12-pack of Red Bull, spouting clichés like "pedal to the metal," "drove it like I stole it" and "keep working hard." You don't have to attend a press conference to obtain postrace quotes from Castroneves because they never change.
Look, I understand how some people who may be tasked with having to write deadline stories about racing might get a little bothered by the overuse of certain phrases after every event. I've been in the media center; I've dined on the free food and drank the free drinks and sat through the press conferences, and I can see how this can all become a bit repetitive after a while.
So Helio, if you happen to be reading, here are some tips to freshen up your post-race celebration. Keep climbing the fences if that's what the fans want, but Oreo may be right in that it's time to get away from the boring corporate clichés. I'm not talking about changing up the ones you have for new ones like "Pushing the envelope" or "Racing on the razor's edge" or "Giving a hundred and ten percent" because that would be, in a word, lame. No Helio, since you're an international sensation you need to speak the international language: Movie quotes.
Take this list for starters and try to incorporate them into your interviews with the ever-huggable Jack Arute as much as possible. Trust me, it will win you more fans both inside and outside the media center.
- "How you like them apples?"
- "I'm the king of the world!"
- "I feel the need, the need for speed!"
- "Hasta la vista, baby!"
- "Show me the MONEY!" (On second thought, let Danica have that one.)
- "Say 'Hello' to my little friend!"
- "You can't handle the truth!!!"
"First off at Team Penske we use the buddy system. No more flying solo. You need somebody watching your back at all times.
[pats Will Power on the back]
"Second off, you're gonna learn to discipline your image. You think I got where I am today because I dressed like Peter Pan here?
[points to Tony Kanaan]
"Take a look at what I'm wearing, people. You think anybody wants a roundhouse kick to the face while I'm wearing these bad boys? Forget about it."