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. Tuesday 30 June 2015

  2. Silverstone memories: Trulli crashes out 05:06

    Silverstone memories: Trulli crashes out

    Jarno Trulli escaped from this massive accident during the 2004 British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

    F1
  3. Monday 29 June 2015

  4. 16:02

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  5. Marciello gets Sauber practice outing 14:16

    Marciello gets Sauber practice outing

    Sauber reserve driver Raffaele Marciello will participate in the opening practice session for the British Grand Prix, his third…

    F1
  6. Video: Nico Rosberg's Goodwood diary 13:21

    Video: Nico Rosberg's Goodwood diary

    Nico Rosberg demonstrates what it's like to be a Formula 1 driver at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.

    F1
  7. Force India excited by new car potential 12:26

    Force India excited by new car potential

    Force India team boss Vijay Mallya says the entire squad is "full of anticipation" as it prepares to launch its new car on home…

    F1
  8. Horner extends contract with Red Bull 11:16

    Horner extends contract with Red Bull

    Christian Horner has extended his contract with Red Bull, the team has confirmed to GPUpdate.net. Amid a challenging start to…

    F1
  9. Video: Button drives Senna's McLaren MP4/6 10:28

    Video: Button drives Senna's McLaren MP4/6

    Watch as Jenson Button drives Ayrton Senna's McLaren MP4/6 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.

    F1
  10. Renault's F1 future depends on governance 10:22

    Renault's F1 future depends on governance

    Renault's Chief Executive, Carlos Ghosn, says the French manufacturer is still yet to decide on its future involvement in…

    F1
  11. Leclerc, Günther, Giovinazzi win at the Norisring 10:03

    Leclerc, Günther, Giovinazzi win at the Norisring

    Charles Leclerc, Maximilian Günther and Antonio Giovinazzi shared the wins during last weekend's FIA European Formula 3 round…

    F3
  12. Silverstone memories: Schumacher vs Häkkinen 05:02

    Silverstone memories: Schumacher vs Häkkinen

    Relive the battle between Michael Schumacher and Mika Häkkinen during a rain-hit 1998 British Grand Prix. After pouncing on a…

    F1
  13. Sunday 28 June 2015

  14. Piquet Jr. overwhelmed by Formula E crown 17:45

    Piquet Jr. overwhelmed by Formula E crown

    Nelson Piquet Jr. expressed his amazement at claiming the maiden Formula E championship as he recovered from 16th on the grid to…

    FE
  15. Bird wins, Piquet Jr. takes title in action-packed finale 16:59

    Bird wins, Piquet Jr. takes title in action-packed finale

    Nelson Piquet Jr. beat Sébastien Buemi to the inaugural Formula E championship by a single point as Sam Bird claimed victory in…

    FE
  16. Verstappen bemoans too much 'technical stuff' 11:46

    Verstappen bemoans too much 'technical stuff'

    Toro Rosso youngster Max Verstappen says that Formula 1 needs to get rid of the abundance of "technical stuff" and place control…

    F1
  17. Video: Briscoe escapes huge IndyCar crash 10:55

    Video: Briscoe escapes huge IndyCar crash

    Ryan Briscoe escaped unharmed following a terrifying flip during Saturday's IndyCar race at Fontana.

    Indy
  18. Márquez calls Assen podium 'moral victory' 08:06

    Márquez calls Assen podium 'moral victory'

    Marc Márquez was left encouraged by his return to form at the Dutch TT as he called his second place finish at Assen a 'moral…

    MotoGP
  19. Video of the Day: F1 2015 TV advert 05:11

    Video of the Day: F1 2015 TV advert

    Watch the official TV advert for Codemasters' upcoming F1 2015 title, to be launched on July 10.

    F1
  20. Rahal leads the pack in thrilling fashion at Fontana 01:24

    Rahal leads the pack in thrilling fashion at Fontana

    Graham Rahal broke a 125-race winless streak that stretched back seven years to win a thrilling and record-setting MAVTV 500 at…

    Indy
  21. Saturday 27 June 2015

  22. Buemi win sets up three-way title fight 16:57

    Buemi win sets up three-way title fight

    Sébastien Buemi cruised to victory around Battersea Park to set-up a three-way fight for the inaugural Formula E championship…

    FE
  23. 16:47

    Latest MotoGP photos: Saturday at Assen

    MotoGP
  24. Rossi happy to extend championship lead 15:54

    Rossi happy to extend championship lead

    Valentino Rossi says he was happy to extend his MotoGP title advantage as he halted Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo's string of…

    MotoGP
  25. Branson expects FE to overtake F1 by 2020 15:30

    Branson expects FE to overtake F1 by 2020

    Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson says he expects the nascent electric Formula E championship to pass Formula 1 in terms…

    FE
  26. Rossi beats Márquez in Dutch thriller 13:52

    Rossi beats Márquez in Dutch thriller

    Valentino Rossi extended his MotoGP championship lead to 10 points after prevailing in a thrilling battle with Honda rival Marc…

    MotoGP
  27. London ePrix gets Safety Car start 11:19

    London ePrix gets Safety Car start

    Saturday's first Formula E race in London will start behind the Safety Car, with overtaking prohibited into Turn 1, due to a…

    FE
  28. Video of the Day: Fastest two-wheel mile 05:18

    Video of the Day: Fastest two-wheel mile

    Friday's Goodwood action saw a new world record for the fastest mile on two wheels. Stunt driver Terry Grant piloted a Nissan…

    Misc
  29. Pagenaud tops the field in Fontana qualifying 02:03

    Pagenaud tops the field in Fontana qualifying

    Simon Pagenaud was just the third qualifier in the 22-car field for tomorrow's MAVTV 500, but he wasted no time in going…

    Indy
  30. Friday 26 June 2015

  31. 18:02

    Latest Formula E photos: Friday at Battersea

    FE
  32. London Mayor drives Formula E car 17:38

    London Mayor drives Formula E car

    Mayor of London Boris Johnson drove a Formula E car around the Battersea Park Street Circuit ahead of this weekend's season…

    FE
  33. Video: Alain Prost on e.dams' season 15:34

    Video: Alain Prost on e.dams' season

    Alain Prost discusses a successful first season for e.dams, which stands on the verge of the teams' title.

    FE
  34. 14:02

    Latest MotoGP photos: Friday at Assen

    MotoGP
  35. Rossi storms to pole for Dutch TT 13:56

    Rossi storms to pole for Dutch TT

    Championship leader Valentino Rossi brushed aside his recent qualifying issues by storming to pole position for the Dutch Grand…

    MotoGP
  36. Leimer hopes for Manor Marussia seat 13:13

    Leimer hopes for Manor Marussia seat

    Former GP2 champion Fabio Leimer says there is a strong possibility that he will compete in some Formula 1 races with the…

    F1
  37. Palmer ruled out of 2016 Lotus seat 12:06

    Palmer ruled out of 2016 Lotus seat

    Lotus Deputy Team Principal Federico Gastaldi says that Jolyon Palmer must wait until 2017 before a race seat opens up at the…

    F1
  38. Rossi moves ahead in third practice 09:53

    Rossi moves ahead in third practice

    MotoGP Championship leader Valentino Rossi moved to the front of the pack during the third practice session for Saturday's Dutch…

    MotoGP
  39. Feature: Austrian GP's key questions 07:37

    Feature: Austrian GP's key questions

    In the run up to the Austrian Grand Prix, GPUpdate.net posed five key questions and pondered the outcomes. With the weekend's…

    F1
  40. Video of the Day: Piquet Jr.'s season so far 05:22

    Video of the Day: Piquet Jr.'s season so far

    NEXTEV TCR driver Nelson Piquet Jr. approaches this weekend's Formula E finale in London with a 17-point championship lead over…

    FE
  41. Thursday 25 June 2015

  42. Dutch TT to be held on Sunday from 2016 17:20

    Dutch TT to be held on Sunday from 2016

    Dutch TT organisers have confirmed that the race will be held on a Sunday from the 2016 season, to bring it in line with the…

    MotoGP
  43. Video: A virtual lap of Battersea Park 15:32

    Video: A virtual lap of Battersea Park

    Join Sam Bird for a lap of Battersea Park, the venue for this weekend's Formula E season finale in London.

    FE
  44. 14:21

    Latest MotoGP photos: Thursday at Assen

    MotoGP
  45. Pedrosa sets record pace in second practice 14:09

    Pedrosa sets record pace in second practice

    Honda's Dani Pedrosa posted the fastest ever lap by a motorcycle around the TT Circuit Assen during Thursday's second…

    MotoGP
  46. FIA plans to introduce engine cost cap 13:54

    FIA plans to introduce engine cost cap

    Formula 1's governing body, the FIA, has vowed to address the cost of power units for supplied teams, admitting that it…

    F1
more news