Franchitti Seventh, Dixon 18th in Brazil
IndyCar - Sao Paulo, Brazil
1. (5) James Hinchcliffe (No. 27 Chevrolet)
2. (12) Takuma Sato (No. 14 Honda)
3. (10) Mario Andretti (No. 25 Chevrolet)
7. (3) Dario Franchitti (No. 10 Lexar Honda)
18. (6) Scott Dixon, (No. 9 Target Honda)
Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) drivers Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon finished seventh and 18th, respectively in Round 4 of the IZOD IndyCar Series at the Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300 from the Streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil. The race was slowed seven times for 19 laps over the course of the 75-lap event.
Franchitti started the race in third after qualifying the No. 10 Lexar Honda on the 2.536-mile street course. In turn 1 of lap 1, Franchitti passed the No. 5 car for second and held his ground in the top three through the first 20 laps. On lap 21 the team pit with the leaders under caution from third and rejoined the race in 14th. On the second stint Franchitti fought his way back up to second before his second stop on lap 52 when he pit under a full course caution. The team rejoined the race in 11th and worked their way back to seventh, where they would ultimately finish.
Dixon started the race in sixth and by lap 15 had passed the No. 5 car for fifth place. On lap 21, the No. 9 car pit for the first time and returned to the course in 11th. By lap 39 he had worked his way up to fourth place after surviving four caution periods. The team pit again on laps 50 and 54, but dealt with a waste gate issue which prevented them from advancing in the end, leaving Brazil with an 18th-place result.
With the results, Dixon is now in fifth in the championship standings (-35) behind the leader Takuma Sato, while Franchitti is 15th (-66).
Honda is second in the manufacturer point standings with 27 points, trailing Chevrolet with 33.
Up next for Team Target is Round 5 of the IZOD IndyCar Series with the 97th Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 26, 2013 (12:00 pm ET ABC).
- In the last two races, Franchitti has moved from 26th to 15th in points.
- Both cars qualified in the Firestone Fast Six shootout for the first time this season.
- The No. 9 car experienced a waste gate problem in the last stint of the race.
TCGR Quote Board:
“The Lexar car was very quick today. Unfortunately, there were pretty disastrous pit stops where we lost a lot of stops both times. I used my overtakes to get back through, so it was a shame, because the car was a lot better than that today. I think the boys in engineering did a great job to get here with a good car. We have to have perfect days, and we didn't there, so it's back to the drawing board.”
“The start was okay, the pace was good. We were saving fuel and keeping pace with the others pretty good, hoping that we would run the full-course of the first stint and maybe go a few laps further and jump a few people. We had the caution and the first restart, where we were fine. On the second restart, I got into Helio and broke the front wing. After that, it was real easy to lock the front tires so we slipped back. I think strategy-wise it might have been better to start on blacks, like everybody else, and run the course that way but it's just one of those days where the car initially had good speed but once the stuff started rolling downhill it started rolling pretty good.”
About Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
Chip Ganassi has been a fixture in the auto racing industry for over 25 years and is considered one of the most successful as well as innovative owners the sport has anywhere in the world. Today his teams include three cars in the IZOD IndyCar Series, two cars in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, and one Daytona Prototype in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series. Overall his teams have 15 championships and over 150 victories, including four Indianapolis 500s, a Daytona 500, a Brickyard 400 and five Rolex 24 At Daytonas. Ganassi boasts state-of-the-art race shop facilities in Indianapolis and Brownsburg, Ind. and Concord, N.C., with a corporate office in Pittsburgh, Penn.
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