Will Power endured a tough opening Verizon IndyCar Series opener as the pole sitter suffered early vibrations, pit lane penalties and finally engine problems at St. Petersburg on Sunday.
The Team Penske driver held the lead at the start but the lock up cost him some time, and also allowed James Hinchcliffe to jump him at the first restart, but after pitting early to change tyres, he then ran over the air hose to earn himself a drive-through penalty.
Once the penalty was taken, Power was always on the back foot, being out of sync with pit stops before the engine issues came, and eventually he was black flagged by officials for running too slowly on track.
“We locked up the right front there on the start and that caused a big vibration,” said Power. “We talked about coming in during that first yellow but that would have put us in a bad situation.
“We were able to make it long enough to a good lap number before we came in, then we got a pit road penalty. We still came out of that ok and it was going to be a P3 or P4 kind of day.
“Then we just ended up having some engine issues and that took us out OK contention. It was a typical St. Pete race for me for the last few years. That’s not the way we wanted to start the season, but that’s how it goes.”