Kentucky: Chip Ganassi Racing race report

Dixon Wins at Kentucky with Last Lap Pass of Castroneves SPARTA, Ky. (August 9, 2008)-Target Chip Ganassi Racing's Scott Dixon started from pole, led 151 of 200 laps and made a last lap pass of Helio Castroneves to win the Meijer Indy 300 at ...

Dixon Wins at Kentucky with Last Lap Pass of Castroneves

SPARTA, Ky. (August 9, 2008)-Target Chip Ganassi Racing's Scott Dixon started from pole, led 151 of 200 laps and made a last lap pass of Helio Castroneves to win the Meijer Indy 300 at Kentucky Speedway. Target teammate Dan Wheldon started third and finished fifth.

Dixon's win marked his sixth on the IndyCar Series season, tying the record for most wins in a year held by teammate Wheldon from 2005. More importantly, the Kiwi extended his lead in the championship standings from 65 to 78 over Castroneves with three races remaining in his bid to capture a second IRL title (2003).

The dramatic ending to the race saw Dixon close in on Castroneves over the final two laps, finally catching and passing the Penske driver who ran out of fuel in the final turn.

Wheldon ran in the top three for the majority of the event, but a lengthy pit stop hurt the No.10 team's hopes to regain track position and rejoin Dixon to contend for the win. Wheldon's fifth place finish was his ninth top-five finish of the season.

The duo has combined to win eight of 14 IndyCar Series races this season (Dixon-- 6, Wheldon -- 2). Dixon's Kentucky win marks the 14th win this year for Chip Ganassi Racing Teams, Inc., besting the previous mark for most wins in a season (13, 2007) for the organization.

With his 11th podium in 13 races this season, Dixon extended his IndyCar Series championship lead (558 to 480) over Castroneves, with Wheldon holding down third position with 420 points. Up next for the Target team is the PEAK Antifreeze & Motor Oil Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma County at Infineon Raceway on Saturday, August 24th (5:30 p.m. EDT, ESPN2) where Dixon is the defending racewinner.

TCGR Quoteboard:

Scott Dixon: "What a day. I think we tried to play it kind of safe and just be conservative. Even in traffic we really didn't rush things. The car was fantastic. We didn't have as much speed, actually, as we thought we did, especially in practice and qualifying. The car was super fast. We had a couple of guys that definitely sped up, with (Vitor) Meira and Marco (Andretti) toward the end, their cars were very fast. It was strategy in the end, it was crazy. There was no way we were going to catch him. He was half the track ahead of us. I knew our car was probably quicker than his, but not 20 miles per hour faster. It was nice to get it the way we did. I think about the run that Dario (Franchitti) had for the championship last season, and it's nice to be able to be in that position after how we lost it last year."

Dan Wheldon: "It was a very competitive race, and I am really happy for Scott and all the guys at Target Chip Ganassi. I was having trouble finding speed, and Tony (Kanaan) just wasn't going to let me have it easy, but that's good racing. I didn't seem to quite have enough. It was a good race. We lost a lot of spots in the pits on that last one, and it is difficult to get them back. It seemed I had it going pretty good in the draft, but when I got outside I wasn't quite quick enough. It was a competitive race, and it seemed like we rode pretty well, just a little bit short."

-credit: cgr

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Scott Dixon , Dan Wheldon , Chip Ganassi
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing