It was definitely not the way Ed Carpenter Racing and its road-racing ace, Mike Conway, wanted to follow up their triumph at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Conway and ECR slogged through the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama weekend at Barber Motorsports Park, and while he managed to move up seven positions to finish 14th in the rain-shortened main event, he said the outing was a “frustrating” one.
“I guess we’ll have to take 14th after starting 21st,” Conway said. “We struggled in the wet with overall grip. I tried to make a few moves in the early portion of the race and they just didn’t work out.
“We felt quicker on the [red] slicks, especially on the earlier segments of the runs. But once everyone had their tires up to temperature, we couldn’t get up to make a move. It’s frustrating. I hope we can improve on the road circuits.”
As the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis now looms on the horizon, Conway says he’s looking forward to Wednesday’s test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
But he also believes that the Barber weekend showed that there’s serious work to be done.
“I’m excited to go to Indy for the test this week on the new road circuit,” said Conway. “The race in the upcoming Grand Prix of Indianapolis will be huge for all of the drivers.
“I think everyone would love to win the first IndyCar road race at Indy. But we need to work on the setup some more to fight for a win that weekend.”