— Sports

Dixon wins IndyCar at Texas again ahead of rookie McLaughlin

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) – Scott Dixon had another dominating victory at Texas, winning Saturday night in the first of two races on consecutive days at the IndyCar Series’ first oval track this season. Dixon passed Chip Ganassi Racing teammate and polesitter Alex Palou at the start of the third lap and led 206 of 212 laps for his 51st career victory, his fifth at the high-banked, one 1/2-mile Texas Motor Speedway. In his first oval race, the 40-year-old New Zealander finished .2646 seconds ahead of fellow countryman Scott McLaughlin, a 27-year-old IndyCar rookie.

“Who doesn’t love Texas? I love this place,” Dixon said. “I was looking down and looking in the mirror. He was fast.” Dixon moved with one of Mario Andretti’s 52 victories for the second-most on the career list that A.J. Foyt tops with 67. Dixon has won a race in 19 different seasons, breaking a tie with Foyt for the most part. Last year, Dixon won his sixth season title, one short of Foyt’s record seven.

“I never dreamed of that. I feel so lucky and so privileged to do what I get to do,” he said.

Pato O’Ward finished third, with Palou fourth ahead of Graham Rahal and Josef Newgaden. There have been three different winners in three IndyCar races this season.


Dixon is the first driver to win consecutive IndyCar races at Texas, which has now hosted 33 races – the 34th comes Sunday – in the track’s 25 seasons of races. He won last June in the opener in the pandemic-altered 2020 season.

IndyCar moved up the start of the race by 35 minutes because of the increasing threat of rain more profound into the evening. Qualifying was canceled earlier in the day because of overnight rain and morning mist, creating a damp track that took a long time to dry before a single practice.

series opened May by racing for the third consecutive weekend, with a planned 690 miles in Texas in two races on consecutive days. The race scheduled for late Sunday afternoon is set for 248 laps (372 miles) when there should be no weather issues.

The last time an IndyCar race had been run outside Indianapolis in May was at Sao Paulo in Brazil in 2013. The only other times were in 2010 in Kansas and 2012 in Brazil.


Sebastien Bourdais was done on lap 56 when the No. 14 Chevrolet for A.J. Foyt checked up for a slowing Colton Herta before him coming out of Turn 2 and was hit from behind by Joseph Newgarden.

“Very strange, like his car just fell off the cliff,” Bourdais said of Herta. “That set up a chain reaction we got the short end of.”

Bourdais, who was running sixth, spun, and the car backed hard into the outside wall.

Newgarden was penalized for unavoidable contact and sent to the back of the field on the restart, though they did recover to finish sixth.


James Hinchcliffe got loose and crashed hard into the wall on lap 159, ending the night for No. 29 Honda for Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport with sponsor Genesys, the race’s title sponsor.

Hinchliffe said he had been struggling with vibration and was trying to stay on the lead when the air got taken off his car when Felix Rosenqvist came down on a pass.


Texas was the first race after the Indianapolis 500 from the initial Lone Star State event in 1997 through 2005 and was after Indy every time until last year.

Until this weekend, every TMS race was run in June, though the 2016 race started in June before getting red-flagged because of rain and not being completed until late August.

During the pandemic last year, Texas was the season opener when run in its usual June slot. That was 2 1/2 months before the Indianapolis 500, which is back in its traditional Memorial Day weekend slot this year.

More AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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Molly Aronson

I'm an award-winning blogger who enjoys all things creative but is especially passionate about lifestyle design. I blog over at mehlogy.com I love that I get to share my passion for healthy living, fashion, fitness, and travel with readers from all over the world.

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