Archive for July 8, 2013

07-07-Pocono-Podium-Std

LONG POND, Pa. (Sunday, July 7, 2013) – Scott Dixon proved that it isn’t where you start an IZOD IndyCar Series race. It’s where you finish.

Dixon led a first-ever Chip Ganassi Racing podium sweep to win INDYCAR’s return to Pocono Raceway after a 24-year absence.  Dixon earned his first victory since Mid-Ohio last August, while Charlie Kimball tied his career high of second and four-time series champion Dario Franchitti finished third.

Dixon, who earned his 30th Indy car victory (his first was at Nazareth, Pa.), is the eighth different winner in eleven IZOD IndyCar Series races this season. The race was slowed by only two cautions for 12 laps and was the fastest Indy-car event in Pocono Raceway history, with an average speed of 192.864 mph for 400 miles. The previous record was 170.720 mph in 1989 when Danny Sullivan won a 500-mile event, the last open-wheel race at Pocono before today. Today’s race also featured the second-closest margin of victory in an Indy-car event at Pocono Raceway, when Dixon beat Kimball to the checkered flag by .4572 of a second. The record is .2700 of a second, the gap between winner Danny Sullivan and runner-up Rick Mears in 1984.

This was the 100th victory for Target as a primary sponsor in motorsports and the 200th victory for Honda in North American open-wheel racing.

Will Power placed fourth and Josef Newgarden matched his best finish of fifth at Sao Paulo in May.

Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan’s prospects of claiming the $1 million Fuzzy’s Triple Crown bonus vanished on Lap 107 when he moved to overtake Dixon’s No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car for the lead on the inside entering Turn 1. The right-front wing sustained damage when it clipped the rear of the No. 9 car, and Kanaan pitted three laps later.  Kanaan still remains eligible for the $250,000 prize — along with Dixon — if either wins the MAV TV 500 on Oct. 19 at Auto Club Speedway.

Helio Castroneves, who finished eighth, stretched his championship points lead to 23 over Ryan Hunter-Reay heading to the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader July 13-14, which pays full points in both races. Pole sitter Marco Andretti, who finished 10th after dominating the early portion of the race, remains third and Dixon, a two-time series champion, jumped three positions to fourth with eight races remaining.

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