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Back from Indy crash, Conway is winner

LONG BEACH, Calif. -- His left leg broken in pieces, his back fractured as well, Mike Conway wanted to know just one thing after his horrific crash at the Indianapolis 500: When can I get back behind the wheel?

Once he wrapped his mind around the reality of a long layoff, Conway went about fixing his body.

His nearly yearlong recovery complete, Conway earned his first career IndyCar victory in impressive fashion, zipping past Ryan Briscoe late to win the Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday in just his third race since that bone-breaking crash at Indy.

"As soon as it happened, I wanted to know what the timeframe was until I could get back into the car," Conway said. "I was kind of over it, really, and the physical things just kind of take time. It was a long offseason, but there was a lot to keep my mind on and when I got a chance to get back into the car, I was ready."

Once he got to California, everything fell in place.

The 27-year-old English driver started third after a surprisingly good qualifying session and was able to hang with the leaders on the 11-turn, 1.968-mile circuit through the streets of downtown Long Beach while avoiding the multiple late-race crashes.

Charging out of a final caution, he whipped past two-time defending series champion Dario Franchitti and Briscoe with 14 laps left, then extended his lead from there.


Hamilton stops Vettel

SHANGHAI -- McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton overcame a pre-race mechanical drama to win a thrilling Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday, passing Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel for the lead with five laps remaining.

Vettel made a strong bid for three straight wins to start the Formula One season but he could not hold off Hamilton, who made one more pit stop than the German and had fresher tires at the end.

"It was one of the best races I have experienced," said Hamilton, whose last victory was last year's Belgian GP. "It feels amazing to be able to bring it home. I am absolutely overwhelmed. It feels like a long, long time (since winning). I am so proud and extremely grateful."

Red Bull's Mark Webber, who started 18th, made a remarkable charge to the front to finish third.

Vettel has 12 victories in 65 career starts.

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