Dixon “surprised” stewards didn’t red flag Indy 500 for late crash

Scott Dixon says he was “surprised” that IndyCar race officials didn’t red flag the 104th Indianapolis 500 following Spencer Pigot’s huge crash with five laps to go.

Dixon, who was running second at the time, says that race winner Takuma Sato was likely to have been a “sitting duck” on a potential three-lap shootout. But stewards elected to run the race under yellows until the finish.

“I definitely thought with five to go, I thought they were going to [red flag it] immediately because, one, the size of the crash, and two, where it was, it wasn't going to be a quick cleanup,” said Dixon. “I was kind of surprised they didn't. For us it would have been really good because I think the leader would have been a sitting duck, [although] that's kind of harsh on Sato.

“If they got out there and had a dash with three laps to go, I think all is fair in a situation like that. I can't change that. It is what it is. I think it would have been interesting to see how that played out. It would have been much better for us rather than Sato.”

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Dixon also admitted he should have been “more aggressive” with Sato, having allowed him to pass and then spent the latter stages on a lean fuel mix.

The five-time IndyCar champion said after the race that he “can't see” how Sato would not run out of fuel at the pace he was running in the lead. But he also conceded that he could have pushed Sato harder, and that there was an opportunity to clear Sato around the outside as they battled earlier.

“I probably should have been a little more aggressive on that high side there,” Dixon reflected. “I think he would have just run me up anyway, which maybe would have put both of us in the fence, or maybe just me. Maybe we should have gone harder. Maybe we would have run out of fuel and been in the same position.

“I don't know what was the right call. Just shows you, when I was asked if I wanted to be leading with five laps to go yesterday, absolutely, especially with a scenario like this. Got to say congrats to Sato, too, he drove a hell of a race.

“They were victorious. He's drinking the milk, and that's what counts.”

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