After taking the lead on lap 71, Dario Franchitti led teammate Scott Dixon to the checkered flag for his third win in Toronto and the 30th IndyCar Series win of the year for the points leader.
“I was pretty happy just be in the company of Rick and J.R., and to get my 30th win today means a lot, especially here in Toronto,” Franchitti said. “I got my first pole here in 1997. I love racing in Canada. We had that incident with Will. He out braked himself to out brake me and opened up the door, I went down the inside, I held the wall and Will came down. I put my nose in there, I was trying to get my nose out, but ultimately he closed the door and paid the price.”
The incident, in which Franchitti spoke of with pole sitter and points rival Will Power, happened on lap 56 when they were battling for fifth in turn three. Power kept soildering on, till hitting the tire barrier on lap 66 in turn five after contact with Alex Tagliani.
“It’s just a really disappointing finish for the Verizon car today,” Power said. “My team did a great job in the pits and we were working our way back toward the front and we got past (Dario) Franchitti. We went into the corner and I gave him room and then he just drove into me. I understood he was going to get penalized but then there was no call – I just don’t understand that. After that we were just trying to get the best result possible before Tag (Alex Tagliani) hit me from behind. It’s very tough to have two DNFs (did not finish) in a row. All I can say is we’ll keep working hard and hopefully come back strong at Edmonton.”
“The contact with Will was also a shame,” Tagliani said afterwards. “Will was on blacks. I tried to pass him a couple of times in turn three. He was blocking a bit, and then I made a move on the inside in turn eight and it got tight.”
Meanwhile, it was Franchitti’s teammate Dixon who came home second for his fourth podium finish in the last five races.
“It’s frustrating because these street races are part luck, you know,” Dixon said. “Will and I were one and two, then he comes out like 18th or something like that, so it’s—and the 10 car gets it everytime, so I’ll call back on the radio and say, ‘Let me guess who’s leading. The 10 car.’ Which, is good on him, they make good strategy, and obviously Dario is quick as well and we all had to pass a lot of cars, but it’s frustrating. We were getting into a nice rhythm there, car was quick and good, and then the strategy throws it all off.”
Ryan Hunter-Reay finished third for his best finish of the season.
“I got third and now we just have to go win one,” he said. “The Ganassi boys did a great job. Congrats to Dario. Those cars were the class of the field today. The two red and white cars – they just took off.”
Hunter-Reay’s day wasnt’ totally clean, however, as he made contact with Graham Rahal on lap 80 in turn three, though no caution was brought out due to the incident.
“Unfortunately, it is a bit of a product of Toronto,” Hunter-Reay continued. “I feel really bad for Graham on that. When Dixon went by him,
[media-credit id=4 align=”alignright” width=”225″][/media-credit]Graham kind of chopped him on the straight. Dixon went by him and really ran him wide in the corner into turn three. There’s a football field worth of real estate there and I went for it and Graham slid across so. I’m not going to blame it on him and I certainly did not deliberately do that. That was just part of Toronto. As you can see, what we had out here today was a little bit of a crash test unfortunately. I hope the fans enjoyed it and I am just really happy to get DHL, Circle K and Sun Drop on the podium. It was a hard fought day. It wasn’t a straight forward podium that’s for sure.”
Marco Andretti and Victor Meira rounded out the top five.
The race was halted by five full course yellows throughout the 85 laps this afternoon.
The first caution was on lap three when Ryan Briscoe and Tony Kanaan made contact in turn three, causing Kanaan to go airbourne, but he’d be okay.
“I gave Briscoe plenty of room and he still took me out,” he said. “It was too early in the race to be doing stupid moves like that. I had a good car and was moving up the field, I guess I overtook four cars in the first lap, so I was going to the front. It’s a shame for the GEICO KV-Lotus guys.”
The second caution was on lap 30 when Helio Castroneves and Tagliani made contact in turn three, halting Tagliani to a stop in turn three on the course. He’d get the car restarted and carry on.
The third caution was on lap 39 when James Jakes stopped on the course.
The fourth caution came out on lap 48 for a multi-car wreck involving Paul Tracy, Victor Meira, Charlie Kimball and Sebastain Bourdais.
The fifth caution came on lap 56 for the incident involving Franchitti and Power, while the sixth caution came out on lap 71 for a multi-car accident involving Danica Patrick, Jakes and Tagliani.
“It was just a really frustrating day,” Patrick said. “I thought we had a good race car. After we would pit for new tires, it would feel really good, but we kept getting caught out by the yellows. I have to thank the GoDaddy.com crew for working so hard all weekend.”
The last caution was on lap 76 for another multi-car wreck involving Justin Wilson, Oriol Servia, James Hinchcliffe, Charlie Kimball, Mike Conway and Marco Andretti.