Texas: Series race report

DIXON CLAIMS BOMBARDIER LEARJET 550K FOR FIRST WIN AT TEXAS FORT WORTH, Texas -- Scott Dixon claimed his first win at Texas Motor Speedway, winning the Bombardier Learjet 550k under caution after the cars driven by Marco Andretti and Ryan ...

DIXON CLAIMS BOMBARDIER LEARJET 550K FOR FIRST WIN AT TEXAS

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Scott Dixon claimed his first win at Texas Motor Speedway, winning the Bombardier Learjet 550k under caution after the cars driven by Marco Andretti and Ryan Hunter-Reay made contact while battling for second place with five laps remaining.

Helio Castroneves finished second and his Team Penske teammate, Ryan Briscoe, was third. Dan Wheldon, who started 11th in his backup car, finished fourth and Tony Kanaan improved eight positions to finish fifth.

As Andretti and Hunter-Reay were competing on the backstretch for second place, the left tires of Hunter-Reay's No. 17 Team Ethanol car got on the racetrack apron and slid up the track into Andretti's car.

Dixon, who passed Andretti for the lead with six laps remaining, claimed his third win of the season. He leads Castroneves by 35 points (284-249) after the race.

DAY 3 NOTEBOOK:

Venerable sportscaster Jim McKay, host of "ABC's Wide World of Sports" for more than 40 years, died June 7. He was 86.

McKay anchored ABC's broadcasts of the Indianapolis 500 from 1967-74 and 1976-85. He was the host of the broadcast in 1986-87.

"Jim McKay was an icon, a legend in broadcasting," Indy Racing League and Indianapolis Motor Speedway CEO Tony George said. "He helped build ABC Sports and the Indianapolis 500 through a true partnership and always remained a friend and a fan. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway family offers its condolences to his family."

McKay won his 12th Emmy Award in 1988 for penning the openings of ABC's coverage of the 1987 Indianapolis 500, the British Open and the Kentucky Derby.

"He was one of the nicest, most down-to-earth and sincere sports guys I knew," four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J Foyt said. "He was definitely the first big-time sports announcer that I ever met. From when he started doing the Indy 500 back in the 60s, he interviewed me many times and he was always a real gentleman. He did a super job for ABC Sports on TV and especially the Indy 500. They don't make him like that anymore. I'm glad that I got to know him."

BOMBARDIER LEARJET 550K POST-RACE NOTES:

* This is Scott Dixon's third win of the season and the 13th win of his career. He also won at Homestead-Miami Speedway in March and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May. It is his first win at Texas Motor Speedway.

* This is Target Chip Ganassi Racing's fourth win of the season. It previously won at Homestead-Miami and Indianapolis with Dixon and at Kansas with Dan Wheldon. This the team's second win at Texas. It also won with Jeff Ward in 2002.

* Helio Castroneves finished second, his eighth consecutive top-five finish. He is the only driver to finish in the top-five in every race this season.

BOMBARDIER LEARJET 550K POST-RACE QUOTES:

SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone, Bombardier Learjet 550k race winner): "I can't believe it. It's great for the team and great for Target. We just want to win this championship. I'm sorry to see it end under caution, but it's a great way to get some points for this championship. Dan (Wheldon) did a great job coming from the back, and I saw him looming there for a little while. I don't know what to say. We finally won at Texas, and I'm pretty happy about that."

(About accident between Andretti and Hunter-Reay): "I kind of caught it a little bit in my mirror. I saw it was getting a bit crowded back there. It gets a bit desparate in the last few laps. If it had played out to a fuel-strategy race, it would have been a nice, clean finish, but when you have eight laps to go and 20 guys going for second or first spot, you're going to have something happen. It 's unfortunate that it happened, but good for us."

(About fuel late in the race): "Mike Hull and (engineers) Eric (Bretzman) and Brian (Welling) do a good job getting me to aim for a number. I had to be very close to the end, but so was everyone else. I think we would have been on the edge, but I think we would have been all right."

HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Team Penske Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished second): (About drive-thru penalty) "For the car that I had, it was supposed to be a win. I'm upset about that; I let those guys down. Team Penske did an incredible job of putting me back on the lead lap and to finish second is great for the conditions."

RYAN BRISCOE (No. 6 Team Penske Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished third): "I don't know what I was thinking at the start when I missed my box. We went to the back but came through the field. The car was a missile. We had to change (front) wings and the car never felt quite as good in the second half of the race as the first, but it was a great recovery for the team and great for the points in the championship.

(When lap down) The more time I spend with Team Penske you just never give up. We've been a lap down many times, even in the American Le Mans Series. But with Roger (Penske) on the box, he works like magic and we seem to always get that lap back and get in contention."

DAN WHELDON (No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished fourth): "Very good results for everybody at Target Chip Ganassi Racing. Obvisously, Scott (Dixon) is on a tear right now. Unfortunately I wasn't able to run the Polaroid car, but that's the way it goes. I want to say thank you to the (Delphi) Safety Team for the job the did this weekend. They were pretty busy. It was a little inconsistent for me, but that's part of racing. We came out with a top-five. It still didn't go my way, but we'll work on that."

TONY KANAAN (No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished fifth): "We struggled with the balance, then something broke on the last stop. I think it was the rear bar. I was all over the place. I was so dangerous. I had to apologize to Dan (Wheldon) and a bunch of guys. I couldn't keep on the track. I was hoping everybody would stay away from me. I was trying to let everyone by. It was a rough day, but having the worst day of the year and still finishing fifth, I don't think it's that bad."

HIDEKI MUTOH (No. 27 Formula Dream Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished sixth): "It would have been great if the Formula Dream Team was able to finish in top five. If the last yellow didn't come out I think we could've been able to finish in top three. I was trying to save fuel but I was sure that we could go without making another pit stop. It is little bit frustrating but that is the race. I learned so much this weekend, and I feel more comfortable in the traffic after this weekend. I enjoyed the race."

VITOR MEIRA (No. 4 Delphi National Guard Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished seventh): "Our car was just awesome when we were running up front. The team made one fuel-only stop early in the race, so we were about 10 laps off-sequence. But otherwise we were really good. The car was skating on me a little bit in traffic, but everybody saw how good we were once we got to the front. I was pulling away. This is another good race for us and another step forward. The confidence level at Panther is really, really high right now."

ED CARPENTER (No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished ninth): "It was a tough race and I had a really good car early on, but then we put on a set of scuff tires. On that set, the car just got really out of control. That's really where we lost our race. We had to pit early as a result, then we lost a lap, and it all just really unraveled with that set of tires. I think we may have ended up okay in the points with Servia dropping out and Marco Andretti not finishing at the end. It was just a tough day for the No. 20 Menards/Johns Manville car. I feel like we had a lot better car than the ninth place we ended up with, but we just didn't get a chance to use it."

DANICA PATRICK (No. 7 Motorola Dallara/Honda/Firestone, finished 10th):"I am frustrated that we did not stay up front the entire race. My car was really loose most of the race, so that made it difficult to drive in traffic. The Motorola crew is working really hard and I appreciate their efforts."

RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 17 Rahal Letterman Racing Team Ethanol Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "Marco gave me the low line on the backstretch and all day that meant that he would give me the low line in the corner as well, but he came down on me, I went low to avoid him and got down on the white line. That upset both cars and took us out. We had a great car, we pushed really hard, the guys in the pits were flawless, and we really deserved a good finish tonight. This was going to be our breakout night and we didn't get it. I can't tell you how disappointed I am."

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 26 Blockbuster Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "I really feel bad for the whole Blockbuster crew. We were running so well, as was Ryan (Hunter-Reay). I feel kind of bad for both of us but the fact is, there are some guys you can run close with and some guys you can't. He clearly hit the white line and that is that. We ran well today, but to me, that doesn't matter. We need to bring home results. It's very disappointing."

***

The 2008 IndyCar Series season continues with the Iowa Corn Indy 250 on June 22 at Iowa Speedway. The race will be telecast in High Definition at 1 p.m. (EDT) by ABC. The race will air live on the IMS Radio Network. A Spanish-language telecast of the race will be carried by ESPNDeportes. The IMS Radio Network broadcast also is carried on XM Satellite Radio and www.indycar.com. The 2008 Firestone Indy Lights season continues with the Jeld-Wen 100 June 21 at Iowa Speedway.

-credit: irl

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jeff Ward , Helio Castroneves , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Dan Wheldon , Ryan Hunter-Reay , Marco Andretti , Chip Ganassi , Tony George , Mike Hull
Teams Team Penske , Chip Ganassi Racing