From Amy Konrath

INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 2, 2011) – INDYCAR officials have placed drivers Mike Conway, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Alex Tagliani on probation through Dec. 31, 2011 for multiple instances of initiating avoidable contact during IZOD IndyCar Series events this season.

“We are disappointed in these actions, which have exhibited a pattern of driving that endangers on-track safety and adversely affects competition,” said Brian Barnhart, president of competition and operations, INDYCAR.

Conway, of Andretti Autosport, was penalized for avoidable contact with Ryan Briscoe at Toronto and Oriol Servia at Edmonton. Teammate Hunter-Reay was cited for the same violation after contact with Briscoe at Barber and Takuma Sato at Edmonton. Sam Schmidt Motorsports’ Alex Tagliani was deemed in violation of the rule after contact with Will Power at Toronto and Graham Rahal at Edmonton.

If the improvements are not met, INDYCAR may impose other penalties at its discretion.

Per Rule 9.3 of the rulebook, a competitor must not initiate or attempt to initiate avoidable contact that results in the interruption of another competitor’s lap time or track position.

The drivers may protest as pursuant to the rulebook.