Two years ago, Hinchcliffe was walking around the paddock at St. Petersburg, waiting to make his series debut. He was set to make a week later due to how the deal had come together with Newman-Haas Racing in 2011.
Now, this year, Hinchcliffe was able to make the pass on Helio Castroneves late in the race to pick up his first victory of his IndyCar Series career.
“What a difference 24 months can make,” he commented. “Even last year was such a difference in my first race with Go Daddy, Andretti Autosport. We qualified, finished in the top five. That was a good result for us.”
Going into the final restart, Hinchcliffe thought that Castroneves was simply going to drive away from him as Castroneve had the red tires while Hinchcliffe had the blacks. A vibration in the first stint of the race with the red tires caused engineer Craig Hampson to make the call to run the blacks at the end.
“Just as the first stint went on, it just sort of developed a vibration, a sign of excessive wea...