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Franchitti takes Long Beach win

The win was Franchitti's ninth in the IndyCar Series, but surprisingly his first on any road or street course as he racked up a quarter-century of successes for Target Chip Ganassi Racing.

“I got lots of Champ Car street and road course wins, but I haven't had one in the IndyCar Series, so to finally get one feels good for all kinds of reasons," the Scot admitted, "After everything we went through last year, and then Chip coming up and saying 'hey, do you want to drive my IndyCar?', we're now back here winning together. Having finished second to his cars here twice, I said to him last night 'if you can't beat 'em, join 'em', and here we are. It's a great day!”

Power again underlined the talent that could be sidelined by Castroneves' return, finishing second in the #12 Team Verizon Wireless car two days after relinquishing the seat of the #3 to the Brazilian. Power now sits second in the overall standings after two top six finishes in as many outings with Penske, having enjoyed his best IndyCar Series weekend to date.

“We had no radio and no telemetry, so I was doing it off the steering wheel and off the pit board," the Australian revealed later, "I'm very happy, and second is very good. I feel happy for all the guys as they put a lot of effort in. I really want to thank Roger Penske and Tim Cindric for bringing this Verizon Wireless car here for me. I really appreciate it. They've given me a fantastic ride, and I can't thank them enough.”

Kanaan returned to the podium as he celebrated his 100th race with third place in a strong Andretti Green showing. The Brazilian had started back in eleventh spot, but came through to claim a series record 68th top five finish in the reliveried Dr Pepper machine..

“We work better under pressure, I guess," he smiled, "It's a good day for Andretti Green Racing, and a great job for the 7-Eleven team. That's how we count points and move forward. When we have a car to win, we win, and, when we don't, we finish on the podium.”

Patrick came from even further back, rising from a disappointing 22nd on the grid as she and Michael Andretti plotted a fuel saving strategy that fell beautifully in line with the day's cautions. The Motorola machine gained 18 places in the course of 85 laps - the most of any car - and Patrick ran second on merit for a while.

“It was a good job on the strategy and getting that right," she acknowledged, "We pitted at the right times - I believe they just said Dario and I were on that strategy - and, if the yellows would have fallen just right, we'd have had the lead. There was just no passing out there but, unfortunately, I made a little mistake and Will got by and then Tony got by me because of the blend line - there's no way he would have beat me out, because I passed him still on the track, but it's the way that the blend line works..."

Wheldon, too, benefited from some good strategic thinking from the Panther Racing team, climbing nine places from 14th after qualifying despite being caught up in a multi-car shunt at the hairpin in the first half of the race.

“So far, the team has done a fantastic job calling the races, and it was certainly a different race as there wasn't a lot of passing out there," the Briton commented, "Once I got off the black tyres - which I really struggled with - it really came alive, and the track rubbering in helped us as well. But team did a really good job - I thought we were pretty competitive all weekend. It was important for us to score points going into Kansas, because that's a race I'm very confident about..."



Related Pictures

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Indy Racing League. 24-25 Feb. 2009. IRL Homestead Test.  Homestead Internation Raceway. Homestead, Florida. Dario Franchitti.
Chevrolet sweeps the podium with winner Mike Conway (center), driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka / Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrating his victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the second of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. Tony Kanaan (left), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet celebrates his second-place finish. Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet celebrates his third-place finish. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Chevy Racing sweeps the podium with race winner Sebastien Bourdais (center), driver of the #11 Hydroxycut KVC Racing Technology Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrating his victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the first of two IndyCar Series races in Toronto, Canada. Second-place finisher Helio Castroneves (left), driver of the #3 PPV Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet, and third-place finisher Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, join the celebration. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, races to a third-place finish Saturday, July 12, 2014 at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V6, takes over the championship points lead with an eighth-place finish. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races teammate Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, Saturday, July 12, 2014 at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Dixon won the pole and finished in fourth-place. Kanaan led for most of the race and finished third. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Ryan Briscoe (left), driver of the #8 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, talks with teammate Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, during qualifying Friday, July 11, 2014 for Saturday`s race at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Briscoe qualified fourth, Kanaan second and teammate Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 won the pole. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 celebrates winning the pole Friday, July 11, 2014 for Saturday`s race at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Dixon will start in the front row with teammate Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, who qualified second. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 wins the pole Friday, July 11, 2014 for Saturday`s race at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Dixon will start in the front row with teammate Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, who qualified second. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Johnny Rutherford speaks with official pace car driver Dario Franchitti (Photo by: Dana Garrett for IndyCar Media)
Chip Ganassi (Photo by: Eric Anderson for IndyCar Media)
Chip Ganassi speaks with Sage Karam (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Dario Franchitti and Tony Kanaan on Monday at practice for the Indianapolis 500. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe, driver of the #8 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a sixth-place finish Saturday, May 10, 2014 during the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt for Chevy Racing)
Chevrolet Racing introduces the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Indianapolis 500 pace car Tuesday, March 25, 2014. Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will drive the Camaro Z/28 to pace the 98th running of the race on May 25. It’s the eighth time a Camaro has been the pace car, starting in 1967 – and the 25th time a Chevrolet has paced the race. The 2014 Camaro Z/28 is the most track-capable model in its history, building on the legacy of the original SCCA Trans Am-series contender introduced in 1967. (Photo Courtesy of IMS Photography for Chevy Racing)
Chevrolet Racing introduces the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Indianapolis 500 pace car Tuesday, March 25, 2014. Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will drive the Camaro Z/28 to pace the 98th running of the race on May 25. It’s the eighth time a Camaro has been the pace car, starting in 1967 – and the 25th time a Chevrolet has paced the race. The 2014 Camaro Z/28 is the most track-capable model in its history, building on the legacy of the original SCCA Trans Am-series contender introduced in 1967. (Photo Courtesy of IMS Photography for Chevy Racing)
Chevrolet Racing announces Tuesday, March 25, 2014 that three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will drive a 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 to pace the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 25. It’s the eighth time a Camaro has been the pace car, starting in 1967 – and the 25th time a Chevrolet has paced the race. The 2014 Camaro Z/28 is the most track-capable model in its history, building on the legacy of the original SCCA Trans Am-series contender introduced in 1967. (Photo Courtesy of IMS Photography for Chevy Racing)
Chevrolet Racing announces Tuesday, March 25, 2014 that three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will drive a 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 to pace the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 25. It’s the eighth time a Camaro has been the pace car, starting in 1967 – and the 25th time a Chevrolet has paced the race. The 2014 Camaro Z/28 is the most track-capable model in its history, building on the legacy of the original SCCA Trans Am-series contender introduced in 1967. (Photo Courtesy of IMS Photography for Chevy Racing)
Dario Franchitti reviews data in the Target Chip Ganassi pit stand at the 2014 Open Test at Barber Motorsports Park on Tuesday March 18. (Photo Credit: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)

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