Dixon triumphs in Texas again, seizes IndyCar series lead

Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, celebrates in Victory Lane by firing guns after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series DXC Technology 600, at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, on June 9, 2018
AFP

Los Angeles (AFP) – New Zealand’s Scott Dixon reaffirmed his mastery of Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, leading 119 of 248 laps en route to his third win there and the 43rd of his IndyCar career.

Dixon broke out of a tie with Michael Andretti for third-most career wins. He had joined Andretti on 42 victories just last weekend in Detroit.

Now the only drivers with more wins than Dixon are Indy legends A.J. Foyt with 67 and Mario Andretti with 52.

Dixon, driving a Honda-powered Chip Ganassi Racing car, took the chequered flag 4.2943sec in front of Team Penske’s Simon Pagenaud of France.

A four-time IndyCar series champion, Dixon now tops the season standings with 357 points, 23 ahead of Alexander Rossi after nine of 17 races.

Dixon started in seventh and worked his way patiently toward the front. He took the lead for the first time on the 130th of 248 laps on the high-banked, 1.5-mile (2.41 Km) oval.

He led the rest of the way to add another Texas win to those he claimed in 2008 and 2015.

“I love winning in Texas,” Dixon said. “This place is awesome. The car was just dialled in. The pit stops were fantastic.”

Andretti Autosport’s Rossi finished third in a race that saw plenty of action.

Brazilian rookie Matheus Leist escaped unscathed from a frightening fire. He pulled to a stop alongside the wall after his A.J. Foyt Racing Chevrolet lost power on lap seven, flames already shooting from the back and one side of his vehicle before he wriggled out.

There wasn’t another caution until lap 173, when Robert Wickens and Ed Carpenter touched going into turn three, both hitting the barrier.

A final caution came on lap 205, when Indianapolis 500 winner Will Power and Zachary Claman De Melo collided in Turn 4, ending the night for both drivers.

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