Dixon spoils Penske party at Road America

Dixon spoils Penske party at Road America

Dixon spoils Penske party at Road America

Dixon, a four-time season champion, won his 41st career IndyCar race and first since last September at Watkins Glen.

Prior to the race start, the Road America event seemed destined to be a Penske-Chevrolet walkover after Roger Penske's four drivers - including Toowoomba's Will Power - dominated practice and qualifying.

Castroneves, who settled for his 13th podium finish since last winning in 2014 at Detroit, pulled ahead at the start while Newgarden passed Power to move into second.

Scott Dixon was the fastest Honda at 1m42.78s, followed by Marco Andretti at 1m42.85s and Spencer Pigot jumped up to seventh with a lap of 1m43.07s in the ECR Chevy.

Castroneves, in his 20th IndyCar season, broke a tie for third on the career poles list with Bobby Unser. "This is huge for Honda at a track that doesn't suit our configuration, but the power and the (fuel) mileage really performed today", Dixon said. If you're a race fan, and more precisely an IndyCar fan, Road America is the place to be.

Pagenaud fourth third behind Scott Dixon and teammates Josef Newgarden and Helio Castroneves in Sunday's Kohler Grand Prix.

But crucially, the caution period had eradicated Newgarden's advantage, his predicament now exacerbated by running the slower Black tyres as opposed to Dixon's Reds, as is mandatory for one phase of the race.

"It was going to be an instrumental piece for us", Dixon said. We went off track on the first stint because the throttle stuck wide open. "Go out there and take the challenge to them, as will Dixie, [and] see what happens".

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The top six on the grid were all within 49 points of each other in the overall standings, which should make for an exciting race on Monday (NZ time) around the Road America racetrack.

Mikhail Aleshin will start 19th in Sunday's race.

Aleshin had been in France to compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans last week. The Russian driver had to miss a day of practice in Wisconsin but arrived at the track on Saturday. Wickens, who tested a Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Indy auto in February as part of a ride swap with friend James Hinchcliffe, ran 20th in each of the sessions with a best lap of 1:44.7085.

"Unfortunately, the cooler temperatures on Saturday affected a few things, and I struggled to bring the tyres in, which meant it took too long to get up to pace".

Esteban Gutierrez, who made his series debut three weeks ago with Dale Coyne Racing at the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix, was named Thursday to drive the team's No. 18 Honda for the remainder of the season.

After flying to the United States, Aleshin said he found out that his luggage was lost by an airline. "We had an issue with our front wing, which ironically or not, is the same issue we finished the race with here past year, so we definitely need to figure out exactly what happened and make sure it doesn't happen again".

Kanaan should benefit from the experience of his previous success at the road course.

Charlie Kimball, in need of a strong finish after being stricken with bad luck so far in the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season, scored his best finish of the year with a fine run to sixth place.

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