Roger Penske reveals he received kidney transplant in late 2017

Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images

Car owner Roger Penske confirmed to reporters Friday that he had a kidney transplant at the Mayo Clinic shortly after the 2017 IndyCar season finale.

Penske had kept the procedure private until revealing it during a group interview in St. Petersburg, Florida. The NTT IndyCar Season opens there Sunday (12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN). Penske, who is 82 years old, received the kidney from his son, Greg.

A 2013 Autoweek story said that doctors diagnosed Penske with bladder cancer in 2005 and removed one of his kidneys.

Penske revealed his procedure as Tim Cindric, president of Team Penske, discussed his hip replacement surgery with reporters. That surgery also was done at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

The Associated Press reported that Penske’s transplant came days after Josef Newgarden won the IndyCar title for Team Penske in 2017.

Penske’s teams have won 500 major races, 580 pole positions and 34 championships in 53 years. The team also has won 17 Indianapolis 500s. Team Penske won the Cup title last year with Joey Logano.

Also Friday, Penske spoke to a small group of reporters about changes that need to take place in NASCAR in the coming years.

One of Penske’s suggestions is to run Cup races on back-to-back days in the same location.

“If they make a change, we should run doubleheaders,” Penske said. “Saturday-Sunday. Maybe run 200 miles on Saturday, 300 on Sunday, they both count.”