IndyCar »

Wheldon makes history in St Petersburg.

Englishman Dan Wheldon became the first driver to win an IRL IndyCar Series race on a track other than an oval as he led an Andretti-Green Racing top four sweep on the sunny streets of St Petersburg in Florida.

Wheldon capitalised on a late race clash between surprise leader Ryan Briscoe and defending series champion Tony Kanaan to move from third to first and claim his second win of the season.

The Londoner overcame several concerted passing attempts from Kanaan over the final nine tours of the 1.8-mile St Petersburg track on a historic day for the series, and its champion team Andretti-Green, taking the chequered flag one and a half seconds ahead of his teammate.

Like Kanaan, Dario Franchitti also made several forceful passing moves during the course of the 100-lap race to take the final podium position ahead of pole sitter and lap one leader Bryan Herta.

The first non-AGR car home was Rahal-Letterman Racing's Vitor Meira in fifth place, the Brazilian born driver escaping a collection of accidents, which, in total claimed eight of the 21 starters.

Scott Dixon survived a last corner assault from Kosuke Matsuura to take sixth position ahead of Buddy Rice and Patrick Carpentier, who was the last driver on the lead lap.

Carpentier and ninth place finisher Darren Manning were the only two drivers with prior experience of the part airport, part waterfront circuit but while Carpentier had a quiet day, Manning briefly led until contact with Kanaan in turn eight dropped him down the order.

Danica Patrick enjoyed a brief stint in second place during the opening 30 laps thanks to a different pit strategy to that of most of the leaders before a gearbox problem cost her five laps. After repairs she returned to finish 12th, gaining valuable experience and finishing as the top rookie driver.

Briscoe was finally classified 14th after a side-by-side moment with Kanaan shortly after the final restart of the day on lap 91 ended with the Target Chip Ganassi Racing Panoz-Toyota nose first in the tyre barrier.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
irl indycar series  jan. 19-22, 2005
open test   homestead-miami speedway
dan wheldon
Tony Kanaan - Andretti-Green Racing   [pic credit: IRL/Ron McQueeney]
irl indycar series  jan. 19-22, 2005
open test   homestead-miami speedway
dario franchitti
Juan Pablo Montoya, Will Power and Tony Kanaan on the podium after the ABC Supply Wisconsin 250 at Milwaukee IndyFest on Sunday August 17 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The confetti flies as Will Power, Juan Pablo Montoya, and Tony Kanaan raise their trophies in Victory Lane (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power (center), driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Sunday, August 17, 2014 with second-place finisher Juan Pablo Montoya (left), driver of the #2 PPG Team Penske Chevrolet, and Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Huggies Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet at The Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, Wisconsin. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a sixth-place finish Sunday, August 3, 2014 during the IndyCar Series race at Mid Ohio Raceway in Lexington, Ohio. The finish was good enough for Power to retake the drivers points championship lead from teammate Helio Castroneves. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon (right), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Sunday, August 3, 2014 during the IndyCar Series race at Mid Ohio Raceway in Lexington, Ohio. Sebastien Bourdais (left), driver of the #11 Hydroxycut KVC Racing Technology Chevrolet IndyCar V6, finished second. It`s Dixon`s first victory of the season. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 celebrates his victory Sunday, August 3, 2014 during the IndyCar Series race at Mid Ohio Raceway in Lexington, Ohio. It`s Dixon`s first victory of the season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 celebrates his victory Sunday, August 3, 2014 during the IndyCar Series race at Mid Ohio Raceway in Lexington, Ohio. It`s Dixon`s first victory of the season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon in action on his way to victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon in action on his way to victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon in action on his way to victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon and the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing team celebrate victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course on Sunday August 3 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.