St. Pete Race Report
Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) driver Scott Dixon finished 15th on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla. in the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg– the first race of the 2015 season for the Verizon IndyCar Series.
After advancing to the second round of qualifying and starting ninth, Dixon dropped one position by the time a fullcourse caution flew on Lap 1 of the 110-Lap race for debris. Dixon stayed steady in 10th position after the Lap 5 restart until making a green-flag pit stop on Lap 23. During the stop the air jack began to malfunction, which became a lingering issue the team would deal with for the remainder of the race. Lap 26 brought another caution for debris, where the No. 9 team pitted twice to address the air jack. Dixon restarted in 21st and stayed there until the next caution for debris on Lap 33. With other cars making pit stops under the yellow flag, Dixon restarted in 16th on Lap 37. Dixon climbed his way up to 14th by the time the caution flew 10 laps later for a car off track, and pitted under caution on Lap 48. Dixon maintained the 19th position from the Lap 52 restart until another caution on Lap 54 for an incident on track. The No. 9 pitted for fuel only on Lap 57 before restarting in the 20th position on Lap 58. Dixon clawed his way through the field to 13th position before pitting on Lap 80 for fuel and a set of alternate tires but found himself back in 19th after pit stops had cycled through. By Lap 90, Dixon moved into the 18th position, where he would ultimately finish.
With the result, Dixon holds the 15th position in the Verizon IndyCar Series point standings with 15 markers, 36 points behind the points leader Juan Pablo Montoya.
Notes of Interest
· This is the first time Dixon has finished outside the top seven since the Houston race in June 2014.
Scott Dixon, No. 9 Target Chevrolet: "It wasn’t the day we had hoped for in the Target car today. We had some early issues with the air jack and couldn’t get the car off the ground during our pit stops. It seemed like the front would come up, but the rear end would stay on the ground. The team did the best they could on our stops but in reality you can’t be competitive in this type of racing when your stops are taking that long. We just never seem to have the best luck in St. Petersburg but we’ll keep pushing for the results we know we’re capable of.”