Race Report: Go-Pro Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma
SONOMA, CA Aug. 26, 2012—The movie Groundhog Day where the protagonist relives the same day over and over would be a good analogy for Mike Conway’s race Sunday afternoon at Sonoma Raceway. He passed a lot of cars over and over but the record will show he started 14th and finished 14th.
The start of the 85-lap race around the 2.38-mile road course saw Conway scrambling to avoid a skirmish involving Scott Dixon and Helio Castroneves which resulted in Conway dropping three spots before the first lap was completed.
He worked his way back to 14th by the time of his first pit stop at lap 16 but then dropped to 22nd as different fuel strategies began to evolve. Now on the quicker red alternate tires, he moved up to 13th by the time he stopped again on lap 39. The ABC Supply crew slapped on a set of used reds as they wanted to save the remaining set of new red tires for the final fuel stint.
Unfortunately, Conway became stuck behind a lapped car about the time the used tires were showing their wear. Conway radioed in “The tires are gone.” Team Director Larry Foyt told him to try to hang on as he’d pit in about five laps. Conway slipped from 12th to 15th and went a lap down before he could pit on lap 61 for new tires.