TORONTO, Ontario – Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) took both poles (Dario Franchitti-Race 1, Scott Dixon-Race 2) and then Dixon swept both race wins with Franchitti scoring two top-five finishes (third, fourth) in Rounds 12 and 13 of the IZOD IndyCar Series at the Honda Indy Toronto on the Streets of Toronto.
With the results, Dixon brought home an additional $100,000 for winning the SONAX Perfect Finish Award bonus for winning both rounds in Toronto.
The No. 9 car fought to get back to fifth on lap 7 and four laps later was able to pass another car for fourth. Dixon made good ground and while in third, pit for the first time on lap 26. The No. 9 car held its ground through a full course caution and restart, taking 0.5-seconds out of the leader’s 1.0-second gap.
Dixon moved up to second with 27 laps to go and stayed out a lap longer than the lap leader to make up the gap for the lead. The strategy paid off and on lap 63 the No. 9 car beat the leader out of the pits and held off a challenge for the lead. With 16 laps to go on a restart Dixon then dropped to third, but made up ground to second in just four laps.
With nine laps to go Dixon was side by side with the leader and attempted to pass, but could not get around. One lap later Dixon was able to pass for the lead. The No. 9 car held the lead and with four laps to go a caution was called. On the final lap restart Dixon got a huge jump and led all the way to the checkered flag.
Franchitti started the race on the inside of the front row after qualifying the No. 10 Target Honda on pole position. When the race went green Franchitti held the lead for the first 20 laps. On lap 20 the No. 10 car reported the tires were falling off and fell back to fourth. Franchitti pit from fourth to change tires and returned to the circuit in the same position.
The No. 10 car held on to fourth, but on lap 63 dropped back to fifth. Franchitti made his way back to fourth and in the final stages had more push to pass left than any other driver in the top-10 (6). With 12 laps to go, the No. 10 car jumped up to third on a restart, and finished there for a Target double-podium result.
Race 2 – Dixon started the race on the inside of the front row after qualifying the No. 9 Target Honda on pole position. The second standing start of the weekend was a success, and Dixon held his position and built a 1.49-second gap from the start. The No. 9 car had increased its lead to more than four seconds by lap 15 and had led every lap.
Dixon then pit from the lead and had a quick stop to rejoin the race in the lead. The No. 9 car built an 8.1-second lead 31 laps into the race and clinched the two bonus points for leading the most laps in the race on lap 47. Dixon then improved to a 13-second gap over second place.
Under a full course caution with 13 laps to go, the No. 9 car fought to keep its lead on the restart. With two laps to go another full course caution was displayed and Dixon drove to the checkered flag after leading 81 of 85 laps.
Franchitti started the race on the outside of the front row after qualifying the No. 10 Target Honda second. On the standing start, Franchitti fell back to sixth after making slight contact with the rear of the No. 3 car. The No. 10 car had to pit for a new front wing and changed from red tires to black tires.
Franchitti returned to the circuit and tried to make up ground for the early pit on lap 5 of 85. On lap 41 Franchitti was in 12th and trying to get back to the top-10. The No. 10 car was able to move up three positions to ninth by lap 57.
Franchitti then made it in and out of pit lane just in time as a full course caution was called, and was up to sixth by lap 72. Under the last caution of the race with two laps to go, Franchitti made his way to fourth, where he would ultimately finish.
With the results, Dixon moved up two places to second in the IZOD IndyCar Series point standings with 396 markers, -29 points behind leader Helio Castroneves. Franchitti is now sixth with 307 markers, -118 points back.
Honda is second in the manufacturer point standings with 96 points, trailing Chevrolet with 99.
Up next for Team Target is Round 14 of the IZOD IndyCar Series with the Honda Indy 200 from Lexington, Ohio on Sunday, August 4 (3:00pm ET NBC Sports).