Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) driver Dario Franchitti came home with the victory in the Honda Indy Toronto on Sunday afternoon in Round 10 of the IZOD IndyCar Series, while Target teammate Scott Dixon finished second.
The win marked the 30th of Franchitti’s Indy car career, moving him into sole possession of ninth on the all-time wins list, ahead of 4-time Indianapolis 500 Winner Rick Mears. Franchitti is now one win shy of tying Paul Tracy and Sebastien Bourdais for eighth on the all-time wins list with 31.
Franchitti started third and kept the No. 10 Target Honda inside the top-three for much of the early portion of the race. Using pit strategy, Franchitti took the lead for the first time on lap 33. He led the next 16 laps before a caution on lap 49 put the Target team back to fifth. He wasted little time moving back into the top-three and re-took the lead with 14 laps remaining. Franchitti held on to the top spot and took the checkered flag by 0.7345-seconds ahead of Dixon.
Dixon started the race second and ran inside the top-two until a full-course caution came out during a cycle of green flag pit-stops on lap 31. After falling outside of the top-10, Dixon used a lap 37 restart to move the No.9 Target Honda into sixth before another yellow flew on lap 39. He re-entered the top-five on lap 47 and drove back into the top-three with less than 20 laps-to-go. In the end, Dixon came home in second, giving him his sixth consecutive top-10 finish.
- With the victory, Franchitti has now won four times this season
- This is the third time Franchitti has won at Toronto (1999, 2009).
- This is TCGR’s fourth win at Toronto (Michael Andretti 1994, Alex Zanardi 1998, Franchitti 2009).
- This is the 30th win of Franchitti’s Indy car career, moving him into sole possession of ninth on the all-time wins list ahead of Rick Mears.
- This is the 84th top-five of Dixon’s Indy car career.
- This is Dixon’s sixth consecutive top-10 finish
- This is Dixon's fourth podium finish in the last five races and the fourth time he has finished second this year. (Barber, Texas one, Texas 2)
- Franchitti has now led in six races this year, tying him with Will Power for the most races led this season.
- This win marks TCGR’s 84th win and CGR’s 142nd win overall.
Franchitti now has a 55 point lead over Power in the IZOD IndyCar Series with 353 points. Dixon remains third in the standings, 83 points behind Franchitti.
Up next for Team Target is Round 11 of the IZOD IndyCar Series at Edmonton City Centre Airport for the Edmonton Indy on Sunday, July 24th (2:00 p.m. ET, Versus).
Dario Franchitti: "I was pretty happy just be in the company of Rick Mears and Johnny Rutherford, and to get my 30th win today means a lot, especially here in Toronto, I got my first pole here in 1997. I love racing in Canada. We had that incident with Will. He outbraked himself to outbrake 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. And then with Graham Rahal, I don't think he was doing anything crazy, there was nothing bad going on there, but he couldn't run the outside of 10 in the marbles, so he was taking my lane, and I couldn't get on the outside of 11, so I couldn't get alongside him. I tried it once and almost smacked the fence down. We were doing our best, the restarts were tough just because of the marbles on them. As far as the points go, racing against guys like Scott Dixon and Will Power, you see how good Scott's been all weekend, Scott was dynamite all weekend. Will was very strong, we know that, I don't take anything for granted. That lead could go down in one week, so we'll just keep pushing."
Scott Dixon: "It's frustrating because these street races are part luck, you know. Will and I were one and two, then we come out like 18th or something like that, so it's frustrating. We were getting into a nice rhythm there, car was quick and good, and then the strategy throws it all off. For us we knew what the fuel window was, we discussed it in the morning, we were going to pit early. But obviously they split the strategy with Dario and he pitted early, and left me out to put some pressure on Will, which that didn't work, but we knew the get home number and we were set."
About Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
Chip Ganassi created his own one-car IndyCar team in 1990 and established a partnership with sponsor, Target. Today, Chip Ganassi Racing Teams includes two entries in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, four in the IZOD IndyCar Series and one Daytona Prototype in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Cars Series. Overall his teams have 12 championships and 142 victories, including three 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.