Houston Mechanical gremlins hurt Scott Dixon's qualifying

(Houston, Texas): Mechanical Gremlins have hurt the first qualifying run of PacWest Racing’s Scott Dixon as he tries to clinch the Dayton Indy Lights Championship in Houston, Texas this weekend. Dixon, driver of the ...

(Houston, Texas): Mechanical Gremlins have hurt the first qualifying run of PacWest Racing’s Scott Dixon as he tries to clinch the Dayton Indy Lights Championship in Houston, Texas this weekend.

Dixon, driver of the #17 Invensys/Powerware PacWest Lights entry, was hit with electrical problems in the first practice session on the temporary downtown street circuit this morning and with a fuel pressure problem in afternoon qualifying.

The 20 year-old New Zealander currently has a 20-point lead in the championship over American Townsend Bell and has to extend that margin to a minimum of 22 points to take the title on Sunday with one round remaining.

Tony Renna, driver of the #18 Motorola PacWest Lights machine, was looking a strong qualifying spot before he hit the tires on the exit of turn 10 on his 11th qualifying lap.

Young Australian Jason Bright has taken provisional pole for Sunday’s race with a time of 65.964 seconds and he was followed by Geoff Boss (66.035s) and Mario Dominguez (66.223s). Bell, Dixon’s main championship threat, was eighth with a time of 66.748 seconds.

TONY RENNA - # 18 MOTOROLA PACWEST LIGHTS – 9th
Practice Time: 66.813s

“I was on a flyer, trying to get on the gas to post a quick time, when the rear of my car came out on me and I hooked the tire barrier coming out of turn 10," said Renna.

”I slammed the front of my car into the tires and damaged the right side of my car.

“Andy Boss was behind me and as he was trying to avoid my car, he hit us and the tires.

“We will get everything together overnight and have another go tomorrow.”

SCOTT DIXON - # 17 INVENSYS/POWERWARE PACWEST LIGHTS – 14th
Practice time: 66.965s

“We’ve just had problem after problem today, so I am obviously not very pleased with our position, said Dixon.

“This morning we lost a lot of time due to an electrical problem where we did not have any dash or shift lights. We were able to fix that problem between sessions, but now we have another problem with our fuel pressure.

“If there is a bright side we’ve still got another day of running ahead of us and two fresh sets of tires for qualifying.”

PRACTICE TIMES: 1: Jason Bright 65.964s; 2: Geoff Boss 66.035s; 3: Mario Dominguez 66.223s; 4: Derek Higgins 66.307s; 5: Felipe Giaffone 66.345s; 6: Jonny Kane 66.389s; 7: Casey Mears 66.407s; 8: Townsend Bell 66.748s; 9: Tony Renna 66.813s; 10: Jeff Simmons 66.816s.

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Series Indy Lights
Drivers Felipe Giaffone , Casey Mears , Scott Dixon , Townsend Bell , Derek Higgins , Mario Dominguez , Jonny Kane , Tony Renna , Jason Bright , Jeff Simmons , Geoff Boss