Conway survives carnage to win again in Long Beach

Conway survives carnage to win again in Long Beach

14 April 2014 – The 40th running of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach proved to be a memorable one for the sport's premier road course event, seeing two leaders lose their chances at winning before Mike Conway emerged victorious. A carnage-filled 80 lap race included a large pileup with leader Ryan Hunter-Reay, and with just two laps to go, new leader Scott Dixon was forced to pit for fuel, handing a charging Conway his second Long Beach title.

One lap was essentially removed from the race distance when former Indianapolis 500 winner Arie Luyendyk spun the Indy two-seater while leading the pace laps. The field circulated one more time before lining up for the first standing start of the 2014 season – something that has proved quite treacherous in the past.

Pole-sitter Ryan Hunter-Reay led the field when the lights went out, with Sebastien Bourdais getting by James Hinchcliffe. The Canadian bogged down on the start and promptly lost four spots, but he would go on to drive a steady race and eventually work his way back up to P3.

With Bourdais chasing Hunter-Reay, the American's lead ballooned out to 2.5s by lap 15.  Both of these men have won in Long Beach, as have five others in the field today. Behind them, rookies Jack Hawksworth and Carlos Munoz had continued their consistent runs in the top ten.

Bourdais was the first of the leaders to pit, followed by Hinchcliffe. Some quick work by the Andretti Autosport crew allowed Hinchcliffe to close right up to the Frenchman on pit exit. A few corners later while adjusting his brake bias, Bourdais understeered with cold tyres into the turn 8 wall, bringing out the first caution of the race.  He would be able to make it back to the pits and continue, though.

On the restart – now single-file for 2014 – Justin Wilson was punted from behind by Graham Rahal at the final hairpin, eventually stalling his engine and bringing out the race's second caution. Rahal would be penalised a few laps later for avoidable contact.

Almost simultaneously, Simon Pagenaud had turned into a corner only to find Will Power's nose already there.  The Frenchman bounced into the tyre wall but was able to continue, albeit with an advertising banner trailing from his left front suspension. With a new nose and black tyres back in the pits, his race would be far from over.
Bourdais was then handed a drive-through penalty for entering the pits under caution, seemingly ending his chances at a solid finish. He would put the period on it a few laps later when he again locked up and buried his car into the turn 11 tyre wall, bringing out the third caution of the race.

Moments later, Charlie Kimball's Chevrolet engine puffed a solid cloud of white smoke, ending a top ten run that saw the Ganassi driver pick up 13 spots.

The next single-file restart was much tidier with Hunter-Reay leading Hinchcliffe, Josef Newgarden, Power, Castroneves, Hawksworth, Conway and Munoz. Conway slipped by Hawksworth to take P6, but the final round of pit stops would nullify that in a few laps.  Power, Newgarden and several others pitted on lap 54, with the leaders following suit the next time around.

On the out-lap, though, the entire complexion of the race changed. Hunter-Reay found himself directly behind Newgarden, who had just come out of the pits on cold tyres. The 2012 series champion took an opportunistic look on the inside just as the leading driver turned into the corner. The two came together on the exit of the turn – directly in the path of the rest of the field. Hinchcliffe hit his team-mate, Sato hit Newgarden, and in an instant several cars sat in pieces on the track. Hunter-Reay's day would be done, as would Newgarden, Hinchcliffe and Sato's. Hawksworth limped back to the pits along with Castroneves, and just like that, Scott Dixon had inherited the race lead.

On the ensuing restart, Justin Wilson was sent into the T1 wall after a hip check from Dixon, but there were no penalties assessed (much to Wilson's dismay). The track stayed green for a few moments longer until Rahal was spun from behind by Aleshin. That meant there would be just ten laps to go on the final restart of the day.

Dixon had been told over the radio to save fuel, but the quiet march of Mike Conway (who started P17) had placed the Brit directly on the Ganassi driver's wheel guards. Also high up in the jumbled top ten were Montoya (P5), Pagenaud (P7) and three of the four rookies.

Another clean restart saw Dixon gain a few lengths on Conway, but his fuel saving efforts would not be enough.  The Kiwi pitted with just two laps to go, handing the victory to Conway and Ed Carpenter Racing. Conway won the Long Beach event with Andretti back in 2011 before winning for the second time in his career in Detroit last year. He now sits second in the standings after two events.

Coming in behind him were two-time Long Beach winner Power and rookie Munoz, who denied his childhood hero Montoya a podium spot.

The field now travels to Barber Motorsports Park in two weeks for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Sunday 24 May 2015

  2. 11:49

    Latest F1 photos: Sunday in Monaco

    F1
  3. 11:31

    Revised starting grid for the Monaco GP

    F1
  4. Video: Van Buuren, Bonifacio in huge crash 11:20

    Video: Van Buuren, Bonifacio in huge crash

    Meindert van Buuren and Bruno Bonifacio clash spectacularly during the FR3.5 race in Monaco.

    FR 3.5
  5. Jaafar takes maiden win in messy race 11:02

    Jaafar takes maiden win in messy race

    Jazeman Jaafar followed up his first pole in Formula Renault 3.5 with victory around the streets of Monaco on Sunday…

    FR 3.5
  6. Brundle positive over Pirelli's 18-inch tyre 08:47

    Brundle positive over Pirelli's 18-inch tyre

    Ex-Formula 1 driver turned television commentator Martin Brundle praised Pirelli's efforts after trialling the company's 18-inch…

    F1
  7. Video of the Day: Rosberg's Monaco tour 05:12

    Video of the Day: Rosberg's Monaco tour

    Nico Rosberg and David Coulthard go on a trip around Monaco ahead of the Grand Prix.

    F1
  8. Saturday 23 May 2015

  9. Di Grassi disqualified, d'Ambrosio gets win 20:34

    Di Grassi disqualified, d'Ambrosio gets win

    Lucas di Grassi has been stripped of his Berlin ePrix victory over technical breaches, promoting Jérôme d'Ambrosio to a maiden…

    FE
  10. 17:02

    Latest F1 photos: Saturday in Monaco

    F1
  11. Ricciardo feels miscommunication cost third 16:53

    Ricciardo feels miscommunication cost third

    Daniel Ricciardo believes a miscommunication from the Red Bull pit wall cost him a chance of claiming third place on the grid at…

    F1
  12. Di Grassi extends title lead with Berlin victory 16:44

    Di Grassi extends title lead with Berlin victory

    Abt driver Lucas di Grassi extended his Formula E championship lead with a comfortable victory in the Berlin ePrix on Saturday…

    FE
  13. Räikkönen expects to pay 'big price' 16:25

    Räikkönen expects to pay 'big price'

    Ferrari driver Kimi Räikkönen says he expects to pay a "big price" in the Monaco Grand Prix after qualifying back in sixth…

    F1
  14. Stanaway claims maiden GP2 win in Monaco 15:59

    Stanaway claims maiden GP2 win in Monaco

    Richie Stanaway took advantage of a slow start from pole man Raffaele Marciello to secure the first GP2 victory for both himself…

    GP2
  15. Sainz Jr. hit with pit lane start by stewards 15:48

    Sainz Jr. hit with pit lane start by stewards

    Carlos Sainz Jr. will start the Monaco Grand Prix from the pit lane after he was handed a severe penalty for missing the…

    F1
  16. Button sure he would have reached Q3 15:37

    Button sure he would have reached Q3

    Jenson Button is sure that he would have reached Q3 in Monaco, had he not been hindered by yellow flags at the start of his…

    F1
  17. Williams still targets double points finish 15:17

    Williams still targets double points finish

    Williams is still hoping to get both cars home in the points-paying positions in Monaco, despite a disappointing qualifying…

    F1
  18. Verstappen blames Q3 slump on tyres 15:09

    Verstappen blames Q3 slump on tyres

    Max Verstappen says he was unable to make an impression during the final qualifying phase in Monaco as his tyres "were not…

    F1
  19. Rosberg says he lost rhythm in qualifying 14:41

    Rosberg says he lost rhythm in qualifying

    Nico Rosberg has conceded that he lost his rhythm after Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton beat him to pole position in…

    F1
  20. Hamilton hails 'very special' Monaco pole 14:34

    Hamilton hails 'very special' Monaco pole

    Lewis Hamilton has described claiming pole position in Monaco for the first time during his Formula 1 career as a "very special…

    F1
  21. 14:23

    Monaco Grand Prix: Qualifying results

    F1
  22. Hamilton beats Rosberg to Monaco pole 14:11

    Hamilton beats Rosberg to Monaco pole

    Lewis Hamilton stormed to his first ever Monaco Grand Prix pole position during Saturday afternoon's qualifying session in the…

    F1
  23. 12:46

    Follow qualifying for the Monaco GP!

    F1
  24. Pirelli plans to bid for tyre supply renewal 12:18

    Pirelli plans to bid for tyre supply renewal

    Pirelli says it plans to bid to extend its stay as Formula 1's tyre supplier when its current deal expires at the end of next…

    F1
  25. 11:18

    Monaco Grand Prix: Full Practice 3 results

    F1
  26. Vettel fastest, Räikkönen crashes in FP3 11:06

    Vettel fastest, Räikkönen crashes in FP3

    Sebastian Vettel comfortably led the Mercedes drivers during final practice for the Monaco Grand Prix, while Ferrari team-mate…

    F1
  27. 09:47

    Follow final practice for the Monaco GP!

    F1
  28. Video of the Day: Hamilton chats with Henry 05:04

    Video of the Day: Hamilton chats with Henry

    Lewis Hamilton chats with Thierry Henry about winning and losing after their recent football match.

    F1
  29. Friday 22 May 2015

  30. 19:47

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  31. Video: Codemasters F1 2015 teaser 18:45

    Video: Codemasters F1 2015 teaser

    Codemasters provides a glimpse of F1 2015, coming to PC, PS4 and Xbox One on July 10.

    F1
  32. Matsushita penalised with pit lane start 14:46

    Matsushita penalised with pit lane start

    ART Grand Prix driver Nobuharu Matsushita has been ordered to start the GP2 Sprint Race from the pit lane after causing a…

    GP2
  33. MotoGP eyes Indonesian race from 2017 14:44

    MotoGP eyes Indonesian race from 2017

    MotoGP is looking to add an Indonesian round to its calendar from the 2017 season. Dorna Sports chief Carmelo Ezpeleta and…

    MotoGP
  34. Video: Challenges of racing in Monaco 14:34

    Video: Challenges of racing in Monaco

    Learn more about the challenges of racing in Monaco with this guide from F1 brake supplier Brembo.

    F1
  35. 14:31

    Photos: Berlin prepares for Formula E

    FE
  36. Huertas out of Indy 500 with ear condition 14:17

    Huertas out of Indy 500 with ear condition

    Carlos Huertas has been ruled out of the Indianapolis 500 just two days before the race after he was diagnosed with an inner ear…

    Indy
  37. FIA opens 2017-19 Formula 1 tyre tender 13:16

    FIA opens 2017-19 Formula 1 tyre tender

    Formula 1's governing body, the FIA, has officially opened a tender for interested companies to become the sport's sole tyre…

    F1
  38. F1 Strategy Group 'not fit for purpose' 11:44

    F1 Strategy Group 'not fit for purpose'

    Force India Deputy Team Principal Bob Fernley says Formula 1's Strategy Group "is not fit for purpose", arguing that it should…

    F1
  39. 11:43

    Latest GP2 photos: Friday in Monaco

    GP2
  40. Vandoorne beats Rossi to Monaco win 11:42

    Vandoorne beats Rossi to Monaco win

    Stoffel Vandoorne continued his emphatic start to the 2015 GP2 season as he claimed his third successive Feature Race win around…

    GP2
  41. Bianchi's situation 'stagnant', says family 10:20

    Bianchi's situation 'stagnant', says family

    The father of Jules Bianchi has said that while the family has not given up hope of a miracle, his son's medical situation is…

    F1
  42. Video: Merhi crashes out in practice 09:50

    Video: Merhi crashes out in practice

    Manor's Roberto Merhi brought out the red flags with this crash during second practice in Monaco.

    F1
  43. IndyCar adds Boston street race for 2016 09:19

    IndyCar adds Boston street race for 2016

    IndyCar has announced that it will add a Boston street race to its calendar for the 2016 season. The event, scheduled to be…

    Indy
more news