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. Sunday 26 February 2017

  2. Key: STR boosted by Renault, driver stability 17:59

    Key: STR boosted by Renault, driver stability

    Toro Rosso Technical Director James Key believes the team will be lifted by returning to using current-year Renault power units…

    F1
  3. 17:39

    Photos: Toro Rosso unveils striking STR12

    F1
  4. Sauber confirms schedule for first test 17:33

    Sauber confirms schedule for first test

    Sauber has confirmed its driver schedule for the opening pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Sauber will…

    F1
  5. Video: Toro Rosso STR12 at Misano 17:22

    Video: Toro Rosso STR12 at Misano

    Watch as Toro Rosso's new-look STR12 is put through its paces during a filming day at Misano.

    F1
  6. In photos: Formula 1 designs of 2017 17:18

    In photos: Formula 1 designs of 2017

    Formula 1's 2017 cars have been presented throughout 'launch week', in the build up to pre-season testing in Barcelona. Did you…

    F1
  7. Toro Rosso reveals new look with STR12 17:12

    Toro Rosso reveals new look with STR12

    Toro Rosso has completed Formula 1's launch season by unveiling its new-look STR12 in the pit lane at the Circuit de…

    F1
  8. 17:12

    New: Follow GPUpdate on Instagram!

    F1
  9. Video: Red Bull reveals RB13 online 16:32

    Video: Red Bull reveals RB13 online

    Watch the online presentation as Red Bull reveals its new Formula 1 challenger, called the RB13.

    F1
  10. 14:08

    Photos: Haas presents 2017 F1 design

    F1
  11. Haas F1 unveils VF-17 after filming day 14:02

    Haas F1 unveils VF-17 after filming day

    Haas has officially unveiled its 2017 car, the VF-17, as the American squad prepares to embark on its second season in Formula…

    F1
  12. Red Bull unveils RB13 ahead of testing 12:17

    Red Bull unveils RB13 ahead of testing

    Red Bull has launched its Renault-powered RB13, the car with which it hopes to challenge Mercedes for the World Championship in…

    F1
  13. Driver line-ups for opening Barcelona test 10:44

    Driver line-ups for opening Barcelona test

    Formula 1 finally returns to action at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya this week with the first four-day test of the year.…

    F1
  14. Alonso gives McLaren MCL32 track debut 08:56

    Alonso gives McLaren MCL32 track debut

    Fernando Alonso has given the McLaren MCL32 its track debut during a filming day at a chilly but sunny Circuit de…

    F1
  15. Preview: Formula 1 gears up for testing 08:46

    Preview: Formula 1 gears up for testing

    Formula 1 will roar back into life on Monday morning with the first of 2017's two pre-season test sessions at the Circuit de…

    F1
  16. Video of the Day: Ricciardo on 2017 season 05:32

    Video of the Day: Ricciardo on 2017 season

    Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo talks about his and the team's chances during the 2017 season.

    F1
  17. Saturday 25 February 2017

  18. Márquez dislocates shoulder in test crash 19:20

    Márquez dislocates shoulder in test crash

    MotoGP World Champion Marc Márquez dislocated his shoulder in a crash during Repsol Honda's private test at the Circuito de…

    MotoGP
  19. Haas runs VF-17 for first time in filming day 19:07

    Haas runs VF-17 for first time in filming day

    Haas has run its new Formula 1 car, the VF-17, for the first time during a filming day in Barcelona. Haas is one of only…

    F1
  20. McLaren wary 2017 too soon for success 16:52

    McLaren wary 2017 too soon for success

    McLaren Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Neale is confident that the team will continue to make gains in 2017, but is conscious…

    F1
  21. Video: Vettel drives SF70-H at Fiorano 14:40

    Video: Vettel drives SF70-H at Fiorano

    Sebastian Vettel receives his first taste of Ferrari's SF70-H at Fiorano, after Kimi Räikkönen's run.

    F1
  22. FIA and FIM approve Barcelona changes 12:02

    FIA and FIM approve Barcelona changes

    Representatives from the FIA and the FIM have approved changes undertaken at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, which hosts…

    F1
  23. Wolff: Mercedes to develop intra-team rules 10:12

    Wolff: Mercedes to develop intra-team rules

    Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says the reigning World Champion team will develop its internal driver directive over the course of the…

    F1
  24. McLaren confirms driver line-up for testing 09:53

    McLaren confirms driver line-up for testing

    McLaren has confirmed its driver schedule for next week's opening pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Home…

    F1
  25. Renault RS17 makes track debut in Spain 09:12

    Renault RS17 makes track debut in Spain

    Renault's RS17 has made its track debut at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, two days before the start of pre-season…

    F1
  26. Overview: Mercedes begins new chapter 08:46

    Overview: Mercedes begins new chapter

    Mercedes presented the W08 at Silverstone earlier this week, a car tasked with adding to three successive 'double' title-winning…

    F1
  27. Williams formally presents 2017 F1 car 08:10

    Williams formally presents 2017 F1 car

    Williams has formally presented its 2017 Formula 1 car, the FW40, in an online launch, a week after publishing renders of its…

    F1
  28. Video of the Day: Up close with MCL32 05:32

    Video of the Day: Up close with MCL32

    Take a closer look at the McLaren-Honda MCL32, which was launched by the team on Friday.

    F1
  29. Friday 24 February 2017

  30. Ferrari confirms line-up for opening test 18:15

    Ferrari confirms line-up for opening test

    Ferrari has communicated its planned driver line-up for the opening pre-season test session at the Circuit de…

    F1
  31. Video: Räikkönen drives SF70-H at Fiorano 16:36

    Video: Räikkönen drives SF70-H at Fiorano

    Kimi Räikkönen gives his initial reaction after driving the SF70-H for the first time at Fiorano.

    F1
  32. Sauber confirms Giovinazzi for first test 15:58

    Sauber confirms Giovinazzi for first test

    Sauber has confirmed that Ferrari reserve Antonio Giovinazzi will drive in place of the injured Pascal Wehrlein during next…

    F1
  33. Ricciardo set to debut Red Bull RB13 15:05

    Ricciardo set to debut Red Bull RB13

    Red Bull has confirmed its driver schedule for next week's opening pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, with…

    F1
  34. Video: Introducing the McLaren MCL32 14:02

    Video: Introducing the McLaren MCL32

    McLaren-Honda presents its car for the 2017 season, the MCL32, featuring an orange and black livery.

    F1
  35. Video: Hamilton 360° onboard in W08 12:36

    Video: Hamilton 360° onboard in W08

    Lewis Hamilton commentates on a shortened 360° lap of Silverstone in Mercedes' new W08.

    F1
  36. Alonso wants 'respectable' 2017 display 12:29

    Alonso wants 'respectable' 2017 display

    Fernando Alonso has played down expectations of a sudden jump in performance from McLaren-Honda in 2017, stating that the aim is…

    F1
  37. Räikkönen racks up first laps in SF70-H 11:43

    Räikkönen racks up first laps in SF70-H

    Kimi Räikkönen has completed the first laps in Ferrari's new Formula 1 car, the SF70-H, after its formal launch on Friday…

    F1
  38. Video: Ferrari's SF70-H presentation 11:40

    Video: Ferrari's SF70-H presentation

    Watch the full presentation of the Ferrari SF70-H, the team's challenger for the 2017 Formula 1 season.

    F1
  39. Boullier: McLaren can 'turn the corner' 11:32

    Boullier: McLaren can 'turn the corner'

    McLaren-Honda Racing Director Eric Boullier is optimistic that the partnership can "turn the corner" in 2017, after it unveiled…

    F1
  40. McLaren goes orange with new MCL32 11:07

    McLaren goes orange with new MCL32

    McLaren-Honda has unveiled its new MCL32, which sports a striking orange and black colour scheme, after weeks of speculation…

    F1
  41. 10:55

    Follow McLaren's 2017 car launch live!

    F1
  42. Video: Ferrari adds stickers to new car 09:32

    Video: Ferrari adds stickers to new car

    Watch as sponsor logos and decals are applied to Ferrari's new Formula 1 car, the SF70-H.

    F1
  43. 08:54

    Photos: Ferrari presents 2017 challenger

    F1
more news