By Jeff Olson
Scott Dixon took the lead early, caught a break on a controversial pit stop by Ryan Briscoe, and went on to win a windblown RoadRunner Turbo Indy 300 on Sunday evening at Kansas Speedway.
The victory ended a brief season-opening slump for Dixon, the defending IndyCar Series champion who finished 15th in the 2009 opener at St. Petersburg., Fla., then struggled last week and finished 16th at Long Beach. He came into Sunday’s race 17th in the standings, but left in fourth place.
“It's been a tough couple of weeks,” Dixon said. “We made a few changes to the car and trimmed it out. We were trimmed to win today, and it definitely worked.”
Dixon's Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara-Honda took the lead from pole winner Graham Rahal early in the race and held it until the 99th lap, when Briscoe took control during a pit stop. However, Briscoe caught a bad break when entered the pits just as Dario Franchitti crashed on the 152nd lap, letting Dixon pit under caution and retain the lead while Briscoe settled for a fourth-place finish.
Helio Castroneves, who ran into the back of Vitor Meira’s car on the 17th lap, recovered to finish second. Tony Kanaan was third, Briscoe fourth and Danica Patrick fifth. Marco Andretti finished sixth, followed by Rahal and Hideki Mutoh.A complete report will follow shortly.
Pos Driver Team Time
1. Scott Dixon Target Ganassi 200 laps
2. Helio Castroneves Penske + 0.7104s
3. Tony Kanaan Andretti Green + 1.5022s
4. Ryan Briscoe Penske + 1.8872s
5. Danica Patrick Andretti Green + 2.6502s
6. Marco Andretti Andretti Green + 3.8013s
7. Graham Rahal Newman/Haas/Lanigan + 7.8233s
8. Hideki Mutoh Andretti Green + 8.5430s
9. Ed Carpenter Vision + 8.9871s
10. Dan Wheldon Panther + 9.7681s
11. Mario Moraes KV +20.9048s
12. Robert Doornbos Newman/Haas/Lanigan + 1 lap
13. Sarah Fisher Fisher + 1 lap
14. Justin Wilson Coyne + 1 lap
15. Ryan Hunter-Reay Vision + 4 laps
16. Milka Duno Dreyer & Reinbold + 5 laps
Stanton Barrett 3G 181 laps
Dario Franchitti Target Ganassi 151 laps
Mike Conway Dreyer & Reinbold 109 laps
Raphael Matos Luczo Dragon 95 laps
EJ Viso HVM 37 laps
Vitor Meira Foyt 14 laps