Edmonton: Chip Ganassi Racing race report

Dixon Extends Point Lead with Fifth Win of Season at Edmonton Indy EDMONTON, Canada (July 27, 2008)-Target Chip Ganassi Racing's (TCGR) Scott Dixon won his fifth race of the IndyCar Series season in the Rexall Edmonton Indy Saturday, leading...

Dixon Extends Point Lead with Fifth Win of Season at Edmonton Indy

EDMONTON, Canada (July 27, 2008)-Target Chip Ganassi Racing's (TCGR) Scott Dixon won his fifth race of the IndyCar Series season in the Rexall Edmonton Indy Saturday, leading the final 30 laps to extend his championship lead from 58 to 65 points over Helio Castroneves. Target teammate Dan Wheldon had a podium run at hand in the late goings of the 91-lap race but lost ground when he and Oriol Servia collided, to finish seventh.

Dixon started fourth and used great pit work from his crew on lap 51 to get his No.9 Target Honda Dallara ahead of the front-running Penske machines of Castroneves and Ryan Briscoe. He held on and cruised to a 5.9327 second margin of victory over Castroneves. The win for Dixon was his first on a road course this season, and made him the fourth driver in IndyCar Series history to win five races in a season, one shy of the series record set by teammate Wheldon in 2005.

Wheldon started ninth, ran in the top 10 all day and worked his way into the top three by lap 64. He lost ground though late in the race when he encountered contact from behind which sent him down the running order to finish seventh. With the result Wheldon regained third position in the standings, moving within 115 points of Dixon.

The win marked the seventh of the season for Target Chip Ganassi Racing. The team has now won 23 IndyCar Series races since 2000 and 63 open wheel events overall since 1994. It is also the 13th win of the season for Chip Ganassi Racing Teams Inc., which matches the most wins in a season for the organization (13 - 2007).

With his 10th podium in 13 races this season, Dixon extended his IndyCar Series championship lead (505 to 440) over Castroneves, with Wheldon now in third with 390 points.

Scott Dixon: "It's fantastic. I think at this point in the championship battle it's a must-have for Team Target. Helio has been very strong in the last two races. He's been trying to chase us down, but we were able to make a small gain on him this weekend. At this point, I think a 65-point lead is pretty strong. We just have to keep on it for the next four races. We need to be consistent and continue to earn points. This win was definitely a turn for us in the championship. I've got to thank the team. We were struggling at the start of the weekend. We were probably at best about 11th. So, to come through is simply not what we expected. But my guys nailed that (last) pit stop and we got that lead and we were going to be unstoppable."

-credit: cgr

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Series INDYCAR