Scott Dixon used lapped traffic and a car that was superbly suited to the quirky concrete surface of Nashville Super Speedway to emerge as victor in Sunday's rescheduled IndyCar race. Andretti Green Racing's Dario Franchitti finished second, and...
Scott Dixon used lapped traffic and a car that was superbly suited to the quirky concrete surface of Nashville Super Speedway to emerge as victor in Sunday's rescheduled IndyCar race.
Andretti Green Racing's Dario Franchitti finished second, and AGR teammate Danica Patrick matched her best-ever IndyCar finish with a third place result.
The race went off at the rescheduled 1 PM Eastern time start, the upshot of Saturday night's near-deluge at the 1.3 mile oval in countryside Lebanon, Tennessee.
"We had the right set-up today and I have to thank the Chip Ganassi Racing crew for that. The track started out very grippy, then became loose. Thankfully we were able to take advantage, as the people who were neutral just went backwards today," he said in reference to the unusual racing surface, the only one of its kind on the IRL schedule.
Dixon led from the mid-part of the race to the end, driving into and around traffic with apparent ease, as Franchitti pursued him toward the finish line.
A late-race incident involving Jeff Simmons and Kosuke Matsuura set up a restart with five laps remaining. However, Franchitti found himself behind several lapped cars and unable to take advantage to press Dixon to the line.
A frustrated Patrick climbed from the car to kvetch about lapped traffic herself, this time with Ed Carpenter bearing the brunt of her words.
"If you're not on the lead lap and other people are, then just get out of the way and have a nice day," she offered in advice to the scion of Indy Racing League founder Tony George.
Penske's Sam Hornish Jr was fourth, followed by Marco Andretti and Helio Castroneves; while Scott Sharp, Dan Wheldon, Darren Manning and Vitor Meira rounded out the top ten.
The result boosted Dixon's hopes toward catching Franchitti in the championship points standings. With the win and fastest lap Dixon scored thirteen points toward his deficit with the Scot, now resting thirty-four points behind in second place. Dixon's teammate Wheldon moved into third place for the season and Tony Kanaan (who spun early in the race while passing Sarah Fisher to end his day) dropped to fourth.
The racing resumes on Saturday for IndyCar as the racers move into northern Ohio at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for a triple-header date shared with the American Le Mans Series and the Indy Pro Series. The race is scheduled for Sunday, July 22nd with qualifying the day prior.