IRL: Motegi: Chip Ganassi Racing race report

Team Target has disappointing day in Japan. After capturing the pole for the Indy Japan 300, Scott Dixon was poised to make a run at his second victory in the last three races. Dixon led 45 laps in the race and was ready to challenge Tony Kanaan...

Team Target has disappointing day in Japan.

After capturing the pole for the Indy Japan 300, Scott Dixon was poised to make a run at his second victory in the last three races. Dixon led 45 laps in the race and was ready to challenge Tony Kanaan for the win in the closing laps of the race. However, things changed quickly for the 22-year old Kiwi.

While making a pass for the lead on lap 177, Dixon and Kanaan made contact sending both drivers into the wall at close to 200 mph. The impact of the crash was called "One of the most violent impacts that I have ever seen" by Mike King, the voice of the Indy Racing Radio Network. The impact destroyed both cars and would send both drivers to the medical center. Dixon was released from the medical center after complaining of pain in his right wrist. Kanaan was awake and alert when transported by air to Dokkyo University School of Medicine Hospital in Tochigi, Japan, for X-rays of his right leg and left arm.

After starting 4th in the race, Tomas Scheckter clearly had the fastest car in the race. The 22-year old South African led 36 laps on the day and also set the fastest lap of the race. The fast lap of 201.936 mph was almost 1 mph faster than anyone else in the race. Like his teammate, Scheckter was also making a pass for the lead over Tony Kanaan on lap 168, when his car went high and made contact with the turn four wall. The incident ended his bid for the victory. Scheckter was not injured in the incident. After finishing 16th, Scheckter expressed his sorrow.

"We had a good car all day long," Scheckter said. "When the yellow came, I heard that there was oil in Turn 3 or 4, and it just became a bad situation. I'm sorry for Team Target and Toyota that we didn't win."

The team will now gear up for the 87th Running of the Indianapolis 500, to be held on Sunday, May 25. Practice for the race begins on May 4th with pole day scheduled for May 10th.

For the season, Dixon currently stands 2nd in laps led which is good news for Target House and St. Jude's. The pole win and the total of 81 laps led by Dixon and Scheckter are worth $3,025 for Target House and St. Jude's Children's Hospital. The total for the year now stands at $10,225. Team Target is proud to donate $5,000 for each win, $1,000 for each pole and $25 for each lap led to the worthwhile organization.

-cgr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Chip Ganassi
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing