Franchitti Fourth, Dixon 12th at Sao Paulo
Results (with starting pos.) from Brazil
1. (1) Will Power, No. 12 Honda Dallara
2. (5) Graham Rahal, No. 38 Honda Dallara
3. (4) Ryan Briscoe, No. 6 Honda Dallara
4. (6) Dario Franchitti, No. 10 Kellogg’s Honda Dallara
12. (3) Scott Dixon, No. 9 Target Honda Dallara
SAO PAULO, Brazil (May 2, 2011) – Target Chip Ganassi Racing drivers Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon began Sunday’s Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300 presented by Nestle with unfavorable conditions. Persistent rain and standing water on the 2.536-mile, 11-turn street course forced postponement of the race until Monday, May 2nd after teams completed just 14 of the scheduled 85-lap distance.
On Sunday, Dixon started third but spun out on a lap 7 restart which pushed him back to 17th. Franchitti maintained his sixth-place starting position in the first 13 laps of the race until lap 14 when he took over fifth. After lap 14, all drivers proceeded to pit lane as the rain forced a red flag.
The race resumed Monday, May 2nd when the drivers took the green flag on lap 17. Rain began again, forcing the Target drivers to come to pit lane for treaded tires. On lap 18, Franchitti moved up to fourth, with Dixon in eighth.
On lap 26, Franchitti moved to third, the highest position he held in the race, but moved back to fourth after short-cutting the course on lap 27. The No. 10 car made contact with the turn one tire barriers on lap 33, and after the incident, drove into the pits for a new wing and fuel, dropping to 15th.
Dixon stopped for fuel-only on lap 36, putting him in 11th on lap 37. After a lap 38 restart, he spun in the turn one run-off, pushing him back to 15th.
Franchitti rebounded from his early spin by moving to fourth on lap 49, with Dixon 13th.
When the checkered flag flew on the timed, two-hour event (55 laps), Franchitti crossed fourth with Dixon 12th.
With the results, Franchitti drops to second in the IZOD IndyCar Series championship standings with 154 points, 14 points behind Will Power. Dixon drops from seventh to eighth with 84 markers.
Up next for Team Target is Round 5 of the IZOD IndyCar Series at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Indianapolis 500 Sunday, May 29th (12:00 p.m. ET, ABC).
- Franchitti is the only driver to finish in the top-five in every race in 2011
- This is Franchitti’s best finish at Sao Paulo
Dario Franchitti: "After me making a mistake on the restart, I'm very proud of my Target guys for the wing change and getting us back out there. We came out of this with a fourth-place result, so I'll take it."
Scott Dixon: "It was just mayhem out there. I'm not sure if I got touched or just hit the curb when I spun near the end of the race. Not the result we wanted for the Target car today."