Apr 17, 2013, 2:30 PM EDT
While the rest of the IZOD IndyCar Series was off last weekend, Mike Conway was busy on FIA World Endurance Championship duty in Silverstone.
The Englishman made his WEC debut in an LMP2 class Oreca 03 Nissan for the G-Drive Racing team. He finished seventh in class.
Conway hasn’t started an IndyCar race since Baltimore of last year, where he actually qualified second for A.J. Foyt Racing but lost 10 spots for an unapproved engine change.
It’s been a rocky road in IndyCar since. Conway quit Foyt’s team after a pre-race test at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., citing his discomfort racing on ovals, and was never realistically in the frame for a full-time ride this year.
But, with Rahal Letterman Lanigan ramping up to a second full-time program and third car for selected races, Conway was the pick for Long Beach. He made a smooth pass on Ryan Briscoe two years ago to score a surprise, but popular, first series victory for Andretti Autosport.
Conway had an impressive day-plus of testing for RLL in the series’ official preseason test at Barber. He’s quick on the street courses and a dark horse Firestone Fast Six contender, if not podium contender, this weekend in the No. 17 blu e-Cigs entry for RLL.
“I got a little taste of working with Graham and James at the one-day Barber test we had,” Conway said. “It seemed pretty good with what we were all feeling with the car. We all had similar comments so I think that is good. It will be good to know that if I make a change (to the car) and like it or if Graham makes a change and he likes it then we will be able to transfer that to the other cars and it will make us all quicker.”