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Long Beach 2008: Era ends with Power cut.


The final race of the Champ Car World Series was won by Will Power after 83 laps around the street of Long Beach brought the curtain down on 29 years of competition.

Power took the lead at the start and was untroubled from the moment Justin Wilson retired early on, the run of success enjoyed by the McDonalds car in California coming to an abrupt end with mechanical problems on lap twelve. From there, the Australian only ceded top spot during the pit-stop windows, eventually coming home a comfortable five seconds clear of the field to add to his victories in Las Vegas and Toronto last season, and add a second success to Cristiano da Matta's sole win for KVRT predecessor PKV Racing.

“I got a very good start, which I knew was really important,” Power said, “The KVRT team did a great job with the car - good fuel saving, great pit-stops - and I was very fast in the race.

"I am very happy for Kevin Kalkhoven and Craig Gore, who is the one who gave me the opportunity to race Champ Cars. I am also happy for the whole KVRT team. They have put in so much work over the last couple of months, having been away from their families, so it's great to give them a win because they are the ones who deserve it.”

Franck Montagny provided a glimpse of what might have been, the Frenchman taking second spot for Forsythe Pettit Racing after setting the pace in testing at Sebring before the decision to unify America's two premier open-wheel series spelt the end for Champ Car.

The podium was completed by the man who spent much of last season plugging gaps at various teams, but Mario Dominguez had extra reason to celebrate as he gave Pacific Coast Motorsport its maiden Champ Car top three. The team has yet to reveal its plans for the coming year, but at least bowed out of Champ Car on a high.

“Everyone was racing really hard and to be on the podium in the final Champ Car is a great honour," the Mexican commented, "The team gave me great communication today. We saved a lot of fuel and drove hard. I passed [Alex] Tagliani for third right toward the end and it was an exciting moment."

With IndyCar's Motegi event having gone ahead, albeit a day later than planned, the Long Beach event counted for points after all and Enrique Bernoldi built on his strong result in St Petersburg by adding fourth spot on his third outing.

“I had a really good pace at the end of the race, but it was tough," the Brazilian noted, "The race was long and very tiring physically because the car is very demanding. But I had a good race and I am happy to score points for the championship. It's my best result so far this year, and hopefully I can keep improving my positions like this.”



Related Pictures

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Will Power - Team Australia/KV Racing Technology Dallara-Honda   [pic credit: IRL/Payne]
Chevrolet sweeps the podium with winner Mike Conway (center), driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka / Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrating his victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the second of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. Tony Kanaan (left), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet celebrates his second-place finish. Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet celebrates his third-place finish. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Mike Conway, Tony Kanaan and Will Power celebrate on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Mike Conway, Tony Kanaan and Will Power pose for a selfie on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and Will Power pose for a selfie on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a fourteenth-place finish Saturday, July 13, 2014 at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Power lost the championship points lead to teammate Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, who finished eighth. (Photo by Dan Streck/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Ryan Hunter-Reay waits on pitlane prior to practice at Pocono Raceway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Justin Wilson and Charlie Kimball go side-by-side for the start of the Pocono INDYCAR 500 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay with an early pit stop during the Pocono INDYCAR 500 (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Justin Wilson exits Turn 2 during practice for the Pocono INDYCAR 500 at Pocono Raceway (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Justin Wilson waits on pit lane prior to qualifications for the Pocono INDYCAR 500 (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves celebrates second place (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves on pit road (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves leads Ryan Briscoe (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves on pit lane prior to qualifications for the Pocono INDYCAR 500 at Pocono Raceway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves heads down the Long Pond Straightaway during practice for the Pocono INDYCAR 500 at Pocono Raceway (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 PPG Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Sunday, July 6, 2014 during the Pocono IndyCar 500 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 PPG Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag as he races to victory Sunday, July 6, 2014 during the Pocono IndyCar 500 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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