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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.



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Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Team Chevy sweeps the podium as Tony Kanaan (center), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Saturday, August 30, 2014, during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Teammate Scott Dixon (left), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes second, and Ed Carpenter, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes third. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg EllmanLAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, makes a quick pit stop while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Brian Cleary/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan with his MAV TV 500 trophy (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and crew celebrate winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan celebrates winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and wife Lauren celebrate winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and wife Lauren with the Winners Trophy after winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Confetti falls on the podium trio Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Ed Carpenter celebrate after the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Ed Carpenter celebrate after the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan celebrates winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan celebrates with Chip Ganassi after winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan comes in for service during the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan takes a selfie with his Target Chip Ganassi Racing crew in Victory Lane following the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)

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