On a Lap 179 restart, the Chevy 500 standings had Gil de Ferran leading, followed by Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan, Scott Dixon and Tomas Scheckter.

Had the race ended that way, Castroneves would have won the championship.

However, after the restart, Castroneves' No. 3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara-Toyota and Kanaan's No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara-Honda touched while racing and both were forced to the pits for new tires. The contact ended both of their chances for the championship.

Ironically, Kanaan and Castroneves are close friends and grew up racing against each other in Brazil.

"Well, it's a shame," Castroneves said. "Neither of us wanted to finish like that, especially having a chance to win. When he went to pass, we touched and, all of a sudden, the cars touched. It was close, very close. It is a shame. Everything was close. It was not the way it was supposed to be."

Kanaan was equally disappointed.

"I felt something from behind me, but I don't know what happened. I was on the outside, and I gave him plenty of room, and we touched. I don't know what happened, but it's unfortunate. I had a run on him, I passed him, I was ahead of him. It's a shame to lose a championship like that after the race that we did. The team did a great job. I need to thank the guys for awesome pit stops. Unfortunately, it wasn't our day today."

 

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