Franchitti Fourth, Dixon Fifth in Wine Country
SONOMA, Calif. (August 28, 2011) – Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) driver Dario Franchitti came home fourth in the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma on Sunday afternoon. TCGR teammate Scott Dixon was able to hold on and finish fifth at Infineon Raceway in Round 14 of the IZOD IndyCar Series season.
Franchitti started the afternoon from fourth and kept the No. 10 Target Honda inside the top-four for much of the first run of the race. Following the first round of green flag pit stops on lap-27, Franchitti maintained his top-four position throughout the run and came in for his final pit stop under green with 25 laps-to-go. Following a restart with six laps-to-go, Franchitti held off Target teammate Dixon and remained in fourth. In the end, Franchitti brought the No.10 home fourth for his 11th top-five of the 2011 season.
Dixon started the race from fifth and ran inside the top-five throughout the first stint of the race. After the first round of green flag pit stops, Dixon maintained his top-five position and was able to keep pace with his Target teammate Franchitti. Following the second round of green flag stops, Dixon held onto his top-five spot and closed the gap on the four cars in front of him. Then, on a restart with six laps-to-go, Dixon fended off challenges from behind and drove the No.9 Target Honda Dallara to a fifth-place finish, giving him his ninth top-five of the year.
Franchitti now has a 26-point lead over Power in the IZOD IndyCar Series standings with 475 points. Dixon remains third in the standings, 75 points behind Franchitti.
Scott Dixon: “We just struggled today. I was thinking we would be better over a long distance but we just got worse, as compared to the Penske cars. It was a tough day, it wasn’t the best race as far as passing, but it was all action inside the car working the arms and elbows. Overall, it was a tough day for Team Target and congrats to the Penske boys.”
Dario Franchitti: “Tough day for Team Target. The Penske guys were clearly better than we were and we have some work today before we head off to Baltimore and Japan. Today, I spent a lot of time reading ‘Penske Truck Rental’ off the rear wing of (Ryan) Briscoe’s car and just couldn’t get close enough to get by him.”