Power gets by Sato, cruises to win at St. Pete

Power gets by Sato, cruises to win at St. Pete

30 March 2014 – Will Power was denied a fifth straight pole position at this weekend's Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, but he could not be denied the victory, winning the 110-lap event ahead of Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves.

Power took the lead on Lap 31 after slowly reeling in polesitter Takuma Sato, who led all of the first 30 laps. After Sato's pit-stop, Power dove to the inside heading into Turn 1, going wheel-to-wheel with the Japanese driver before pulling in front. Immediately the Aussie built up a ten second lead and never looked back, winning by two seconds.

The 22nd win of Power's IndyCar career was not without incident, though. The race remained caution free for the first 74 laps until Charlie Kimball understeered through Turn 1 and stalled his car next to the tyre wall. After an extended yellow period, the pace car left the track, but Power did not accelerate on the frontstretch. The rest of the field streamed around the final corner at racing speed only to accordion into one another behind the slowing Power. Jack Hawksworth, taking evasive action, made contact and lost control, collecting Marco Andretti before hitting the inside wall. Hawksworth was fine, but Andretti left his car with a slight limp and a sore wrist.

Power later explained that the green flag had been shown before the designated acceleration zone, meaning he was not allowed to speed up yet. The explanation was little consolation for the rookie Hawksworth, especially, who had been running a clean race in the middle of the pack.

In the bulk of the green flag stretch before the first caution, it looked as though pole-sitter Sato would run away from the field. He was unchallenged at the start and was consistently holding a few seconds' gap until the first round of pit-stops. Switching to the harder black tyres, he emerged from the pits 0.4 seconds in front of Power's Penske machine, which was also clad in blacks.

Castroneves started the race in tenth but soon worked his way into third – a benefactor of a good start and quick pit work by his Penske Racing crew. After the first round of stops he began to pester Sato for second place, but he would have to make his move later in the pit lane, servicing his car off-strategy to Sato's A.J. Foyt crew. During this time, Sato regained the lead but continued to drop after each successive pit stop. He would finish P7.

In the meantime, late-race pushes by Hunter-Reay and Simon Pagenaud set them up for second- and fifth-place finishes, respectively. Helio nearly collided with Power in pit lane in the final round of stops but eventually settled for P3 ahead of defending IndyCar champion Scott Dixon. The man who started second, Tony Kanaan, wrestled with fuel mixture issues throughout the race and finished P6.

Many eyes were on the four rookies in the field for today's race, and they certainly didn't disappoint. Hawksworth's day was cut short in the aforementioned restart incident, but he had been running in the top ten at one point (he would end up classified P21, only ahead of Andretti). Mikhail Aleshin became the top-finishing rookie in P12, whereas Carlos Munoz and Carlos Huertas finished in P17 and P18.

Juan Pablo Montoya, in his first IndyCar race since his time in Formula 1 and NASCAR, had a relatively safe day, staying out of trouble and finishing 41 seconds behind Power in P15. Defending race winner James Hinchcliffe suffered electronic problems the whole day and finished as the last running car.

The IndyCar season continues in two weeks for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach where Power (a two-time winner) and Penske will look to continue their strong start.

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Saturday 28 May 2016

  2. Video of the Day: McLaren's 50 years in F1 05:27

    Video of the Day: McLaren's 50 years in F1

    McLaren celebrates its 50 years in F1 with a special film, presented by team partner Richard Mille.

    F1
  3. Friday 27 May 2016

  4. Giovinazzi penalised, Matsushita gets pole 17:22

    Giovinazzi penalised, Matsushita gets pole

    Nobuharu Matsushita will start GP2's Sprint Race from pole position on Saturday following a penalty for Prema's Antonio…

    GP2
  5. 16:34

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  6. Video: Ferrari's Monaco technical guide 15:32

    Video: Ferrari's Monaco technical guide

    Ferrari Technical Director James Allison talks about the demands of the Monte-Carlo street circuit.

    F1
  7. Kvyat feeling 'better and better' in STR11 13:06

    Kvyat feeling 'better and better' in STR11

    Daniil Kvyat says that his feeling at the wheel of Toro Rosso's STR11 is getting "better and better" on a lap-by-lap basis as he…

    F1
  8. Markelov takes maiden win in GP2 thriller 11:46

    Markelov takes maiden win in GP2 thriller

    Artem Markelov surged from 15th on the grid and profited from a litany of Virtual Safety Car (VSC) periods to provisionally…

    GP2
  9. Haryanto misses long runs due to crash 11:22

    Haryanto misses long runs due to crash

    Manor driver Rio Haryanto was left to rue the lack of any meaningful long runs during practice for the Monaco Grand Prix, after…

    F1
  10. Video: Sauber drivers on Monaco GP 10:03

    Video: Sauber drivers on Monaco GP

    Sauber drivers Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson talk about the challenges of the Monaco Grand Prix.

    F1
  11. Sauber expects to resolve issues 'shortly' 09:24

    Sauber expects to resolve issues 'shortly'

    Sauber team boss Monisha Kaltenborn has expressed confidence that Sauber will resolve its financial issues in the near future…

    F1
  12. Baz confirmed to miss Catalan Grand Prix 08:12

    Baz confirmed to miss Catalan Grand Prix

    Avintia rider Loris Baz will miss next weekend's MotoGP round at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya as a result of the injuries…

    MotoGP
  13. Pirelli pleased with full Ultra Soft debut 07:42

    Pirelli pleased with full Ultra Soft debut

    Pirelli hailed a positive start with its new Ultra Soft tyre compound as the purple-marked rubber made its race weekend debut on…

    F1
  14. Gasly to start from pits after penalty 07:28

    Gasly to start from pits after penalty

    GP2 Series leader Pierre Gasly must start today's Monaco Feature Race from the pit lane after failing to stop at the weighbridge…

    GP2
  15. Video of the Day: FI drawing challenge 05:12

    Video of the Day: FI drawing challenge

    Force India drivers Sergio Pérez and Nico Hülkenberg take part in a special Monaco drawing challenge.

    F1
  16. Thursday 26 May 2016

  17. 19:02

    Latest F1 photos: Thursday in Monaco

    F1
  18. Button 'lucky' in drain cover incident 18:53

    Button 'lucky' in drain cover incident

    Jenson Button says he felt "lucky" to escape unharmed after his car struck a drain cover during first practice for the Monaco…

    F1
  19. Rosberg expecting 'very close' battle 16:24

    Rosberg expecting 'very close' battle

    Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg is expecting a "very close" fight with Red Bull at the Monaco Grand Prix, given the times posted in…

    F1
  20. Sirotkin flies to GP2 pole in Monaco 16:19

    Sirotkin flies to GP2 pole in Monaco

    ART driver Sergey Sirotkin secured pole position for ART Grand Prix during GP2's qualifying session after a stunning final lap…

    GP2
  21. Vettel: Ferrari better than practice display 15:34

    Vettel: Ferrari better than practice display

    Sebastian Vettel is adamant that Ferrari has a competitive car at the Monaco Grand Prix, despite a low key start to the…

    F1
  22. Ricciardo 'in a good window' after first day 15:07

    Ricciardo 'in a good window' after first day

    Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo says he is in "a pretty good window" after topping the first day of practice for the Monaco…

    F1
  23. 14:34

    Monaco Grand Prix: Full Practice 2 results

    F1
  24. Ricciardo puts Red Bull on top in FP2 14:32

    Ricciardo puts Red Bull on top in FP2

    Daniel Ricciardo put Red Bull at the top of the timesheets during Thursday afternoon's second free practice session for the…

    F1
  25. 12:52

    Follow second practice for the Monaco GP!

    F1
  26. 10:37

    Monaco Grand Prix: Full Practice 1 results

    F1
  27. Hamilton edges out Rosberg in FP1 10:35

    Hamilton edges out Rosberg in FP1

    Lewis Hamilton edged out Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg during Thursday morning's first practice session for the Monaco Grand…

    F1
  28. Bianchi family sue over 'avoidable' death 10:23

    Bianchi family sue over 'avoidable' death

    Jules Bianchi's family has announced that it will be taking legal action in the UK against the FIA, the Formula One Group and…

    F1
  29. Pirelli announces Germany compounds 08:58

    Pirelli announces Germany compounds

    Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has announced its compound selections for the German Grand Prix, with the red-marked Super Soft…

    F1
  30. 08:52

    Follow first practice for the Monaco GP!

    F1
  31. Wehrlein downplays 2017 Mercedes chance 08:36

    Wehrlein downplays 2017 Mercedes chance

    Pascal Wehrlein has insisted that he is not thinking about a Mercedes seat in 2017, despite Nico Rosberg being out of contact at…

    F1
  32. GP2 confirms Monaco qualifying groups 08:02

    GP2 confirms Monaco qualifying groups

    GP2 Series organisers have confirmed the qualifying groups for this weekend's second round of the season in Monaco. Under GP2…

    GP2
  33. Video of the Day: Räikkönen looks to Monaco 05:08

    Video of the Day: Räikkönen looks to Monaco

    Ferrari driver Kimi Räikkönen discusses the challenges of the Monaco Grand Prix ahead of this weekend's event.

    F1
  34. Wednesday 25 May 2016

  35. 18:04

    Latest F1 photos: Wednesday in Monaco

    F1
  36. Bianchi family unveils foundation for youngsters 18:03

    Bianchi family unveils foundation for youngsters

    The family of Jules Bianchi have unveiled a foundation created in his name, the Jules Bianchi Society, in order to support young…

    F1
  37. Hamilton: Crash reaction reflects maturity 16:26

    Hamilton: Crash reaction reflects maturity

    Lewis Hamilton believes that the way both he and Nico Rosberg reacted to their collision at the Spanish Grand Prix reflects the…

    F1
  38. Bottas hopes to end Monaco drought 14:39

    Bottas hopes to end Monaco drought

    Valtteri Bottas is confident that Williams can implement the lessons learned across the past few seasons as he chases his first…

    F1
  39. Ricciardo, Magnussen get Renault upgrades 14:04

    Ricciardo, Magnussen get Renault upgrades

    Daniel Ricciardo and Kevin Magnussen will receive upgraded Renault engines this weekend, after the B-spec power unit was sampled…

    F1
  40. Ericsson: Monaco best Sauber chance so far 13:30

    Ericsson: Monaco best Sauber chance so far

    Marcus Ericsson believes this weekend's Monaco Grand Prix provides Sauber with its best opportunity of a top 10 finish so far in…

    F1
  41. Pérez: Tyre degradation hurting race pace 11:56

    Pérez: Tyre degradation hurting race pace

    Sergio Pérez believes tyre degradation is the reason why Force India cannot currently match the likes of rivals Toro Rosso and…

    F1
  42. Rabat has successful shoulder surgery 10:46

    Rabat has successful shoulder surgery

    Marc VDS has confirmed that MotoGP rookie Tito Rabat has started rehabilitation process following his crash at last weekend's…

    MotoGP
  43. Canamasas keeps Carlin seat for Monaco 10:18

    Canamasas keeps Carlin seat for Monaco

    Sergio Canamasas will once again compete for Carlin at the second round of the GP2 Series in Monaco, as championship organisers…

    GP2
  44. London ePrix set for season three change 10:09

    London ePrix set for season three change

    This season's Formula E finale around Battersea Park in London has been given the green light, though the championship will need…

    FE
more news