With such a tough track to pass on, follow the leader was the order of the day for the PacWest drivers. Dixon and Gugelmin gained a few positions early with cars going out of the race, but both competitors had problems in the pits. On the first...
With such a tough track to pass on, follow the leader was the order of the day for the PacWest drivers. Dixon and Gugelmin gained a few positions early with cars going out of the race, but both competitors had problems in the pits. On the first stop, Mo ran over a hose of Shinji Nakano's, and had to serve a drive through penalty. On the second set of stops, with Scott running in P10 and Mo in P16, Dixon endured a long stop and lost seven positions due to a fueling problem. Gugelmin got out of the pits ahead of Dixon and fell back to P17, but regained that spot a few laps later under green. Dixon went on to finish P12, gaining a valuable championship point, while Mo finished just out of the points in P14.
SCOTT DIXON - # 18 POWERWARE PANASONIC PACWEST TOYOTA
Starting position: 12th Finishing position: 12th Laps: 83
"This was a bad ending to a bad weekend," said Dixon. "We were running pretty good in tenth when we had a problem fueling my car during my second stop. I think we were actually the last one out of the pit. Thankfully I was able to work my way back into the points, with a lot of help from others, but I'm still not overly excited with the day. My car was actually good, but it was so hard to pass that it felt like we weren't making any progress. The car was great through turn one but not so great in the keyhole. I'll take the point, but I wish I could have finished higher."
MAURICIO GUGELMIN - # 17 NEXTEL PACWEST TOYOTA
Starting position: 21st Finishing position: 14th Laps: 83
"For the first part of the race, my car was not handling very well," said Gugelmin. "Then, I apparently ran over one of Nakano's hoses as I was leaving my pit box and I received a black flag, drive-through penalty. That really hurt me, but the pit boxes are so tight here that there was no way I could have avoided the hose. Once I served the penalty my second stint was excellent. It felt like my car was on rails the handling was so good. The rest of the way I fought to improve positions, but I still couldn't get a passing opportunity to finish in the points."