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A.J. Foyt signs IndyCar driver Mike Conway

December 20, 2011 |  9:14 am

A.J. Foyt said Tuesday he hired Mike Conway, who won this year's Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, to drive for Foyt's team next season in the Izod IndyCar Series.

ConwayConway, 28, is a specialist on street and road courses and "with the series having twice as many road courses as ovals, we looked for a driver who is fast on those tracks," Foyt said in a statement.

Foyt, who won the Indianapolis 500 at the rectangular Indianapolis Motor Speedway a record four times, added that "I may even be able to give [Conway] a little advice when it comes to the ovals."

The reserved, soft-spoken Conway was seriously hurt in the 2010 Indy 500 when the Englishman's car collided with one driven by Ryan Hunter-Reay, went airborne and then crashed into the catchfence.

But after months of rehabilitation, Conway bounced back with the victory in Long Beach in April while driving for the team of Andretti Autosport.

"Hopefully we can hit the ground running with off-season developments and be quick out of the box," Conway said of the Foyt team. "I'm counting the days until the first test and the start of the season."

-- Jim Peltz

Photo: Mike Conway celebrates after winning the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 17. Credit: Chris Carlson/Associated Press