Jul 8, 2013
LONG POND, Pa. -- Scott Dixon won the Pocono INDYCAR 400 Fueled by Sunoco after starting 17th because of a 10-grid spot penalty for an unapproved engine change.
Impressive. Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Dario Franchitti's run through 160 laps on the 2.5-mile tri-oval also was something to talk about. The four-time IZOD IndyCar Series champion, who also had incurred a grid spot penalty, charged from 20th to finish third.
"Really it's one of those races where you're just taking it every lap, every car you've got to try to pass, every pit stop, just taking it one lap at a time," said Francitti, driving the No. 10 Energizer car. I mean, crikey, to start 20th and end up with a third was great.
"We got a lot of help obviously. The fuel mileage of the Honda engine was exceptional. We are still a little shy on the horsepower but in race conditions it was really the thing to have. We, as I said, pushed every single lap, had some very close moments out there. Such a momentum track; you're always trying to keep momentum up. Your brain is telling you to lift, because the whole car is sliding; you've got to keep the foot down.
"It was a good day, fought every lap, and after the run we've had recently on the ovals, it feels very good."
Teammate Charlie Kimball, who wasn't subject to the grid spot penalty, moved 10 positions to tie his career best of second in the No. 83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing car. Josef Newgarden, driving the No. 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing car, also moved up 10 positions to tie his career best of fifth.
Justin Wilson made up 15 spots to claim his seventh top-10 finish in 11 races by placing seventh in the No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing entry.
“Once we were able to make a few little changes, we were pretty much right there with our pace,” said Wilson, whose crew changed the Honda engine following qualifications which set the Boy Scouts of America car back 10 spots on the grid. “It was a busy race, and we were just trying to pick up spots one at a time. We kept improving, but I was still a little loose at entry and tight in the middle so was just trying to work with that and make the most of the traffic when I could."