Tuesday, October 21, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

In the Pits: Power back in the spotlight following St. Pete win

By
April 02, 2014 |

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Will Power left a late dinner and headed out on foot through the downtown streets of St. Petersburg, where nearly every stranger he passed congratulated him on his win.

It was the same way at the restaurant, as diner after diner stopped by his table. Even the manager, who moved things around on a crowded Sunday night to accommodate the winner of the season-opening IndyCar Series race.

Power was a bit embarrassed. But attention is the price of winning, and Power had not done much of that over the last 23 months.

After opening the 2012 season with three consecutive wins, Power fell into an unusual slump. He didn’t win again that season, but used consistency to remain in the title hunt, only to cough away his chance at the title by crashing early in the finale.

It was a heartbreaking defeat for Power, who lost the championship in the final race of the season for the third consecutive year.

Losing is the lowest form of misery for the hyper-focused Australian. His fitness and diet regime are obsessive, his quirks can be considered eccentric and Power has been accused more than once of being consumed by racing and what it takes to be a champion.

Yet as he slumped through most of 2013 — he was winless the first 14 races and the one-year anniversary of his last victory came and went — Power found that he’d never been happier. He learned to accept defeat.

It required him learning how to let it go, to stop obsessing over the smallest of details, and to go into every race weekend determined to have some fun and not stress about the championship.

“I’ve just got to keep reminding myself, ‘It doesn’t matter if you lose,'” Power said after Sunday’s win. “You’ve just got to keep reminding yourself that it’s a race, and you race hard to win a race. I just race now, race hard. That’s the only way to think of it, not think of points.

“I want to win a championship, but I like winning races. Hopefully the two come together and it happens.”

It finally came together for Power in the 15th race last season at Sonoma, where he picked up his first win of the year. He won at Houston, and again in the season finale at Fontana, the same place he’d crashed away the championship a year before.

Power finished fourth in the final standings, his worst result since he became a full-time driver for Team Penske in 2010. But he won three of the final five races, and that was good enough for him.

“I hate attention. I just loved last year. No one paid attention. I could just do my thing,” he said. “I hope it continues. I don’t want people to talk about me. I like to be low key. I don’t like to be in the limelight.”

And he wasn’t during the offseason or the buildup to the St. Pete opener.

The attention was instead on new teammate Juan Pablo Montoya’s return to IndyCar after more than a decade away, or Tony Kanaan’s move to replace Dario Franchitti at Target/Chip Ganassi Racing. There was talk about Scott Dixon’s bid to defend his series title, Sebastien Bourdais’ quick pace in offseason testing and Ryan Hunter-Reay’s attempt to return to his championship form.

Nothing about Power.

That changed Sunday, when he led a race-high 74 of 110 laps and cruised to the win. That makes four of the last six, dating back to last season’s strong close, and now one can’t help but wonder if Power will again be in the mix to win everything this year.

“Will is quick no matter what. If he gets out in front, it’s going to be hard to take it away from him,” said Hunter-Reay, who beat Power for the title in 2012. “He’s going to be in the hunt for the championship no matter what, unless he has some crazy bad luck. Will definitely hasn’t skipped a beat. He’ll be a definite pain in the rear end this year.”

So whether he likes it or not, the attention is on Power. And no matter how hard he tries, he still can’t shake his compulsive urge to win every time he gets in the car.

But he can manage it a whole lot better.

“Can you have fun not winning? Do I have fun? No,” he admitted. “You know what? You come here to win. Good, hard racing is fun. You start at the back of the grid, you finish up third, that’s fun. There’s nothing worse than just struggling, though, not having the car or equipment to do well. That gives you a good hit — your self-confidence, you start to question yourself.

“I just remind myself that everyone is human, you’re capable of doing everything everyone else is if you work hard.”

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Crime key topic again at Fairfield candidates night

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Pair testify in Laurel Creek shooting case

By Jess Sullivan | From Page:

 
Dixon corn maze breaks own world record

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A5 | Gallery

PAL center seeks volunteers

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A5

 
Police Department hosts employee recognition event

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A5

.

US / World

Police say they might have spotted ambush suspect

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Fashion designer Oscar de la Renta dies at 82

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Yosemite proposes raising entrance, camping fees

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
CDC releases revised Ebola gear guidelines

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Clinton: Midterm elections should motivate women

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Surfer fends off shark attack with fist, board

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

WWII airman to be buried in Oakland

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Brown: California needs long-term vision on water

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Colorado proposes edible pot ban, then retreats

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Submarine hunt sends Cold War chill across Baltic

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Oscar Pistorius to finally learn his sentence

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Youths, tech workers duel over San Francisco field

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Suspect in Va. abduction charged in DC area rape

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Warming Earth heading for hottest year on record

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Lacking a plan, Abbas opts for rhetoric

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Police: Indiana suspect hints at more killings

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Turkey says it helps Kurdish fighters enter Syria

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Nigeria declared Ebola-free; ‘spectacular success’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Urgent-care clinics ill-equipped to treat Ebola

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
GOP governors don’t see ‘Obamacare’ going away

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

British royal couples’ 2nd child due in April

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
.

Opinion

Spering kept youth league going

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

 
Day, Blankenchip good for respective cities

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

‘Misleading’ mailer sent to residents

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: Oct. 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page:

 
.

Entertainment

Yearwood, Santana to perform at World Series

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Standing ovation at Met Opera despite protest

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6 | Gallery

Still the Same: Bob Seger launching tour, album

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6 | Gallery

 
San Francisco radio stations ban hit song ‘Royals’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Pitbull to host American Music Awards on Nov. 23

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ actor arrested in Idaho

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

NBC’s Snyderman faces credibility issues

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6 | Gallery

 
Not so fast cordcutters – cable’s not going anywhere

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5 | Gallery

TVGrid Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

 
.

Sports

Local Report: Armijo boys soccer team falls to Vintage

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

 
Steelers rally past stunned Texans 30-23

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Bumgarner against Shields in World Series opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Raiders plagued by 3rd-down defensive woes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Champion drag racer Raymond Beadle dies at 70

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Stiviano lawsuit against Shelly Sterling dismissed

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

With TD mark in bag, Manning can set more records

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
49ers lose center Daniel Kilgore, needs surgery

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Giants-Royals: A capsule look at World Series

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Belichick, Brady praise Manning on TD record

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Penn State board to meet on disputed Freeh Report

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
McIlroy to skip 2 events to focus on lawsuit

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Column: Keselowski marches to his own beat

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Wanted: Cities interested in hosting 2024 Olympics

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Giants rely on core of 4 relievers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Royals, fans bond over improbable postseason run

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Voynov suspended on domestic violence suspicion

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
.

Business

Facebook sues law firms, claims fraud

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Apple reports record 39.3 million iPhone sales

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

US regulator: Fannie, Freddie in deal with banks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Sears plans to raise more cash via rights offering

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

Survey: Pay raises rarer despite strong US hiring

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5 | Gallery

 
US agency warns car owners to get air bags fixed

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Pickles Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Bridge Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Sudoku Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Baby Blues Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Sally Forth Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Wizard of Id Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Dilbert Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
B.C. Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Crossword Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Frank and Ernest Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Blondie Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Word Sleuth Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Garfield Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Get Fuzzy Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Baldo Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Rose is Rose Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

For Better or Worse Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Zits Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Peanuts Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Cryptoquote Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Beetle Bailey Oct 21

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6