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PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing’s Scott Dixon Gets 2nd Place At IndyCar Iowa 300

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NEWTON, Iowa (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing’s Scott Dixon charged to a 2ndplace finish in Saturday night’s rain-delayed NTT IndyCar Series Iowa 300 at Iowa Speedway.

Dixon started eighth and fell a lap off the pace early as crews and teams struggled to adjust their cars for a race run totally at night on a green race track after severe weather, including heavy rain and lightning, delayed the start of the race four-and-a-half hours.  The green flag finally waved at 11:45 p.m. ET.

Dixon’s recovery was a result of smart pit strategy initiated by Race Strategist Mike Hull, Race Engineer Chris Simmons and the “Wolfpack” crew.

The team brought the “Iceman” to pit road for new tires on lap 268 when Ed Carpenter spun and smacked the wall on lap 264, bringing out the yellow flag.  Several front-running cars opted for track position and stayed out during the caution period.

“Huge credit to the team,” said Dixon.  “They left me out pretty long before the last caution.  It enabled us to stay on that lead lap, get that lucky yellow, get new tires.”

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Dixon restarted the race in the sixth position and was up to fifth after one lap and up to fourth after two laps.  Dixon passed pole-sitter Simon Pagenaud with 19-laps to go to move into third place and dusted James Hinchcliffe with 16-laps to go to move into second place, where he set his sights on leader Josef Newgarden.

“We had a good restart, were able to pass some cars,” said Dixon.

Dixon ran out of laps to catch Newgarden and settled for his 45thcareer second-place finish. The five-time IndyCar Series Champion has now finished first or second in 90 of his 316-career starts (28.4 percent).

“Honestly, to be second, I thought we would be 22nd,” said Dixon.  “Tonight, we just burnt up the tires quickly and both myself and the No. 10 car (rookie Felix Rosenqvist, who finished 14th) really struggled.  I can’t thank everyone enough on the PNC Bank team.  The strategy was great.  We didn’t quite get the win, but oh my gosh, that’s crazy, but I’ll take it.”

Dixon actually lost ground in the championship fight to Newgarden, who he trails by 98-points, but gained ground on Alexander Rossi and Pagenaud who are in front of him in second and third place respectively.

Next up for the NTT IndyCar Series is the Honda Indy 200 next Sunday at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Complex, the closest track to Pittsburgh where the series competes.  Tickets are available at midohio.com.

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INDYCAR Community Reacts To No Fans At Indy 500

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INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The INDYCAR community is reacting to the news that the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has decided to run the Indy 500 on August 23 without fans in attendance.  The decision is a reversal of a plan set forth a few weeks ago where the event would be run in front of 25-percent of the capacity of the Speedway.

Speedway President J. Douglas Boles, who has been a guest on The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast, is appreciative of his team and the fans:

Rahal Letterman Lanigan’s Graham Rahal took to social media to make some great points:

Spencer Pigot who drives for Steelers minority owner Rob Citrone and Robbie Buhl’s team Citrone Buhl Autosport with RLL also took to Twitter to express his feelings:

Chip Ganassi Racing’s Marcus Ericsson also weighed in:

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Andretti Autosport’s Ryan Hunter-Real and Alexander Rossi, two former 500 winners had this to say:

Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden, who’s boss owns the Speedway has a great idea:

Stay tuned to Pittsburgh Racing Now for updated comments from the INDYCAR Community

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No Fans At Indianapolis 500 in 2020

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IndyCar Series

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is cancelling plans to have fans at the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 mile race.

“It is with great regret that we announce the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 will take place on Aug. 23 without fans.  This tough decision was made following careful consideration and extensive consultation with state and city leadership” the Speedway said in a statement.

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“As dedicated as we were to running the race this year with 25 percent attendance at our large outdoor facility, even with meaningful and careful precautions implemented by the city and state, the COVID-19 trends in Marion County and Indiana have worsened.  Since our June 26 announcement, the number of cases in Marion County has tripled while the positivity rate has doubled.  We said from the beginning of the pandemic we would put the health and safety of our community first, and while hosting spectators at a limited capacity with our robust plan in place was appropriate in late June, it is not the right path forward based on the current environment.”

The Speedway is closing all on-track activity to the general public, including practice and qualifications.  Ticket holders will be credited for the 2021 Indianapolis 500 and will retain their seniority and their originally assigned seats.

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The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast – Episode 15 – Aaron Reutzel, Matthew Dillner, Chip Ganassi and more!

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PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The latest edition of The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast features the 2-time and defending Champion of the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 Aaron Reutzel.  We also talk to Matthew Dillner of Dirty Mo Media about the new show he co-hosts with Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Chip Ganassi takes his own trip down memory lane and we hear from Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials about safety protocols in place at this year’s Indy 500.

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