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Dixon wins to overhaul Briscoe

Scott Dixon has moved to the top of the Indy Racing League standings with just one race remaining after an error by erstwhile leader Ryan Briscoe at Motegi pushed him onto the back foot.

Briscoe came into the race with a 32 point lead over Dixon, but saw the margin overhauled when he misjudged his exit from the pit lane and ran over a time line cone, forcing him to pit again and lose touch with the leaders. He would be classified in 18th position.

Dixon, meanwhile, romped to victory from pole position to eke ahead of Briscoe with only the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway remaining.

The title fight remains a three-way fight, however, with Dixon only five points up on Dario Franchitti, the Scot shadowing the New Zealander all the way to the chequered flag to complete a Ganassi 1-2 – a first for the team in Japan.

Although he couldn't make the most of a late caution period, caused when Ryan Hunder-Reay crashed, Franchitti remains just a mere five points adrift of Dixon, with Briscoe a further three points behind.

"Tremendous day for Team Target," said Dixon. β€œIt's what we needed to do. It's a track I've always wanted to win at. I remember coming here in the early years and competing for different engine manufacturers and how much emphasis is put on this race. Definitely a good day for points and I'm very happy."

Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing also had reason to be pleased, with Graham Rahal climbing onto the podium in third position, the youngster ensuring the second closest 1-3 finish of all-time as he chased his more experienced rivals over the line. He was joined in the upper echelons of the standings by team-mate Oriol Servia, the Spaniard performing well on his less favoured oval setting.

An early refuelling problem prevented front row sitter Mario Moraes from converting that into a second consecutive podium finish, although the KVRT driver was able to put on an impressive spurt in the latter stages to climb to a fine fifth place finish having run as low as 18th.

It put him ahead of 2008 Motegi winner Danica Patrick, who in turn held off her team-mate Marco Andretti to lead the AGR charge. Dan Wheldon, top rookie Raphael Matos and Helio Castroneves – recovering from starting at the back of the grid – completed the top ten.


Tagged as: Briscoe , Moraes , Patrick , Franchitti , Japan , Motegi , Dixon

Related Pictures

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Ryan Briscoe edges Scott Dixon in Chicagoland thriller   [pic credit: IRL/Payne]
Indy Racing League.  July 31-Aug. !, 2009. Kentucky Speedway. Sparta, Ky. USA. Pole winner, Scott Dixon.
Indy Racing League.  7-9 August 2009.  Honda Indy  200. Mid Ohio Sports Car Course. Lexington, Ohio. Justin Wilson, Briscoe, Dixon, Hunter-Rey and Duno.
Indy Racing League.  7-9 August 2009.  Honda Indy  200. Mid Ohio Sports Car Course. Lexington, Ohio. Race winner, Scott Dixon.
Indy Racing League. 26-27 June, 2009. Sun Trust Indy Challenge. Richmond International Speedway. Richmond, Virginia. Scott Dixon.
Scott Dixon in pit lane (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate with champagne following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate in Victory Circle following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate in Victory Circle following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal,and Scott Dixon hoist their trophies following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal,and Scott Dixon hoist their trophies following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Coke Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a third place finish Sunday, April 25, 2015 during the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon on course during qualifications for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon with his Coca-Cola Chevrolet following practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon waits on pit lane prior to practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon waits on pit lane prior to practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon rolls down pit lane during practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park  on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon streaks down the frontstretch during practice for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Saturday April 25 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

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Zac Rom

September 20, 2009 5:19 AM

Im loving the IndyCars lately, since they started doing the Road courses as well as the Ovals especially. It always comes down to the last race, I remember 2 years ago when Scott Dixon ran out of gas on the last corner of the last lap of the last race & lost the Chamionship there, THAT was a bummer! Im hoping Dixon wins again, I really do think, out of all the IndyCar drivers, & theres a few F1 refugees in there, He would do well in F1. Of course it will never happen, the NZ F1 TV audience is too small so all the Kiwis end up racing in the States, unlike the Days of Bruce McLaren, Dennis Hulme & Chris Amon BUT that was when it was a sport rather than a Business. Anyway, Go Scott!

sharla - Unregistered

September 19, 2009 8:50 PM

Of the three title challengers, it was most likely to be Briscoe to mess up. But hitting the pit wall when there was already a caution was really bad



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