Australia’s Will Power finished seventh at the inaugural Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana on Sunday as James Hinchcliffe cruised to what may go down as the easiest victory of his IndyCar career.
The Canadian had a wet track and a fortunate pit strategy to thank for his fourth career victory.
Hinchcliffe, racing for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, pitted only once on lap 13, and then spent much of his day leading the field around the NOLA Motorsports Park under a full-course yellow flag.
Because of several wrecks in the traffic behind him, 25 of 47 laps were run under caution. The race was supposed to run 75 laps, but ended – fittingly under caution – as a timed race.
Brazilian Helio Castroneves finished second in the number three Team Penske Chevrolet, with Hinchcliffe’s teammate James Jakes placing third.
Simona De Silvestro and her No. 25 Honda was fourth while Colombia’s Juan Pablo Montoya, who won the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, finished fifth for Team Penske to retain the lead in the standings with 84 points – 10 more than teammate Castroneves.
Juan Pablo Montoya, who won the season-opener two weeks ago in St Petersburg, started on pole after qualifying was rained out Saturday.
He led the first 13 laps under green until he pitted for slick tires as a dry line began to form on the track. He finished fifth after pitting only twice.
Defending series champion Power – who started on the front row of the grid – was seventh, Graham Rahall in eighth, Joseff Newgarden in ninth and Luca Filippi in 10th.