[media-credit name=”texasmotorspeedway.com” align=”alignright” width=”400″][/media-credit]FORT WORTH, Texas (June 9, 2012) – Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) driver Dario Franchitti finished 14th in the Firestone 550 from Texas Motor Speedway (TMS), while Target teammate Scott Dixon finished 18th after leading the most laps.
Dixon started fourth but immediately began working his way to the front of the field, taking over the lead on lap 21. Within three laps, the driver of the No. 9 had opened up a 2.6-second lead over second. Dixon was happy with the balance of the car for much of the race, taking only minoradjustments. He would remain on point for the majority of the 228-lap event, leading 133 of the opening 174 laps. As a late run wore on, Dixon began to lose the handle on the No. 9, battling a loose race car. Dixon would make contact with the wall on lap 174, forcing him to retire from the race. The No. 9 would be credited with 18th.
Franchitti rolled off second, but fought the handling on the No. 10 Energizer Honda from the drop of the green. On lap 21, Franchitti pit under green-flag conditions in order to make major adjustments to the front wing. He returned to the track in 23rd, one lap down. More major adjustments would come during Franchitti’s second pit stop of the day. This time, under the yellow flag, the No. 10 crew disconnected the rear bar. Franchitti managed to avoid the attrition that impacted a large portion of the field, finishing the night in 14th.
With the results, Dixon remains second in the IZOD IndyCar Series point standings with 220 points, -36 points behind leader Will Power. Franchitti drops two positions to sixth in the standings with 192 points, -64 behindPower.
Honda is second in the manufacturer point standings with 51 points, three markers behind Chevrolet. Lotus remains third with 28 points.
Up next for Team Target is Round 8 of the IZOD IndyCar Series with Milwaukee IndyFest from the Milwaukee Mile on Saturday, June 16 at 1:00 PM ET on ABC.
– For the second week in a row, Dixon led the most laps (133 of 228).
– Dixon has led at least one lap in six of the seven races this season.
– In 13 starts at TMS, Dixon has one win (2008), one pole, six podiums and has led 256 laps.
– In 119 starts on oval tracks, Dixon has 17 wins, 15 poles, 46 podiums and has led 3,281 laps.
– Franchitti has participated in 128 oval races, earning 16 victories, 12 poles, 40 podiums and leading 3,305 laps.
– In 10 starts at TMS, Franchitti has one win (2011), two poles, two podiums and has led 236 laps.
Dario Franchitti: “That was a long, long night for the Energizer team. My car was really bad to start with after thinking the car was really good last night in final practice. From about lap 15 on I crashed about three times and the guys brought me in to disconnect the rear bar. We lost some laps from that and then struggled without grip all night. We just fought as hard as we could for every single point after that.”
Scott Dixon: “We just got loose. We had been getting loose at the end of stints. For the last 10 laps of that final stint, I was just really fighting to hold on. That time there, I kind of got into the middle of few people we were trying to lap and I was trying to get back up to (Will) Power. I turned in and the rear just started to slide, and I kind of dipped down onto the apron and shot around again. I feel bad for the guys. We had a really good car and I think we had a good chance to win here tonight.”
About Chip Ganassi Racing Teams, Inc.
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 four 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 14 championships and 147 victories, including four Indianapolis 500s, a Daytona 500, a Brickyard 400 and four 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.
For more information log onto chipganassiracing.com