IndyCar Series: Rexall Edmonton Indy
Topics: Rexall Edmonton Indy
July 26, 2008
THE MODERATOR: We're joined by race winner, Scott Dixon. With his win today he extends his points lead over second place Helio Castroneves by 65 points. This is Scott's fifth win of the season, which has happened two other times in league history. He's one shy of the league record, which is six wins, set in 2005 by Dan Wheldon, when he was a member of Andretti Green Racing.
Scott, tell us about your run out there.
SCOTT DIXON: It was a good day. I think from the start of the race, it was pretty clean. I sort of envisioned to probably make a move on Servia earlier on in the race. It just didn't pan out. He was definitely quite a bit slower I think in race conditions. As we came into the stop, I think we took on less fuel. The Target guys were also fantastic in the pits. That enabled us to get around him.
The Penske guys, Helio was definitely very quick all day. Out front, would have been pretty tough to beat. I think we had a comparable car when we were out front, we just probably wouldn't have been able to pass him on track. So, once again, we got behind Briscoe, saved a ton of fuel, combined with the guys in the pit stop, and we jumped them both.
You know, that was definitely the key move of the race, I think, and they definitely earned that for me. From there on, we had to save a bit of fuel all the way to the end. Think we just had a bit better car to save fuel than Helio did. He was pushing a little bit in some sections. But we were pretty happy and pretty consistent with the car.
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Scott.
Q. I don't think the race went the entire distance of 95 laps. It was a timed race. Would you have had enough fuel, were you comfortable on your fuel, to make it to the end?
SCOTT DIXON: Yeah. I think, you know, we were pretty confident. I'm not sure how many laps we ended up doing.
SCOTT DIXON: Whether we could have gone to 95, I'm not sure. I know I could have definitely done another couple of laps. But that would have been the same for everybody that was behind us except for guys that pitted later. I still had plenty at the end. But to do another four laps, I'm not quite certain that we could have done that.
Q. What do you think this does in terms of clinching the series championship? Could you give us an idea of any compassion for Helio with his second-place finishes.
SCOTT DIXON: That's racing, man. I've been in that situation before unfortunately. When it goes your way, it goes your way. But, you know, Helio drove a great race. I don't think you could fault him on anything he did. He was definitely very fast. I think in the end, our combination was just that little bit better, and that's how we won the race.
I think they may have had a small problem in his pit stop which messed that up. As far as the championship goes, we still want to go out there and win every race. We still got four races to go. 65-point lead, it's not that big really when you get 50 points for a win and maybe three for most laps led.
We've got a lot of work ahead of us. You know, he's got a big margin I think and certain circumstances to catch up if we're running at any race. Consistent finishes is going to be tough. We got to go out, if we can get another race win or another two, that would definitely put the nail in the coffin.
Q. At the end there, the last maybe 20 laps or so, he was pushing real hard.
SCOTT DIXON: I knew he was going to put pressure on. I knew he had the same fuel numbers as me or better. I knew if he made enough laps, trying to make a dive, maybe richen that fuel, get a run on me, it was definitely going to make him slower later. I made sure at certain parts of the track, say out of 12, out of 14, out of 10, places like that, I had enough of a run to make sure he couldn't make a big dive.
You know, that's kind of how it played out. I think I just sort of raced my race looking in the mirrors a little bit to see how he was comparing. And we were still getting big fuel numbers. We needed 3.35 I think, and we were getting 3.45, 3.50. You know, that was -- we sort of had a little bit in our pocket.
Q. How tough a race was it on the circuit, 95 laps here? Pretty grueling?
SCOTT DIXON: It is. Circuits like this, you just don't get a rest. Even on the straights here, they're bumpy. You're coming out of fast corners, you have maybe a couple of seconds before you've got to start thinking about braking. There's absolutely no time for rest. The physical side of it, you're sawing at that wheel pretty hard. It's one of the tougher races we've had this season. St. Pete used to be extremely tough. Detroit's tough as well.
But the grip and the speed of this circuit, you know, definitely takes its toll physically.
Q. Presumably you were still pretty relieved when you looked in your mirrors there about five or six laps to go and saw Helio was either not there or a very distant speck compared to what he had been.
SCOTT DIXON: Yeah, I think at that point I thought he maybe had to save a lot more fuel than we needed to. But, you know, talking to him after the race, I think he made a bit of a dive, got a bit offline, got some marbles on the tires, took him a little while to recover. The next radio transmission I heard was he's six seconds behind. A track like this, that's a lot, when you've only got four laps to go. That definitely made it pretty comfortable. I think you could probably see my lap times drop by about a second and I was sort of cruising at the end.
Q. How surprised were you that Paul Tracy ended up in fourth?
SCOTT DIXON: No, you know, as I said earlier today, he's a guy we need in the series. You know, he's a big name. He's fantastic to watch, especially a circuit like this. He's an animal.
It's a pleasure to be racing with him. I didn't really get to race with him today. But to come from 15th or 16th for a 4th position, I know at some point strategy plays into it a little bit, but you've still got to be quick to get there. Bloody good to see, man. Good to see.
Q. When Helio made his dive, you were kind of hung up behind Danica. Were you starting to think a lap car might make a difference or did you feel like you had it in hand?
SCOTT DIXON: I was hoping not. I don't even know Danica's situation in the race. But, you know, to have me sit behind her for three or four laps was kind of bizarre to me. I don't know what she was thinking. I don't know if she thought she was racing me for the lead or something. But that's the way it goes.
Q. You mentioned on the podium the situation that happened in Watkins Glen, gave yourself a mental kick in the butt over it, the team kind of got remotivated. How much is that on your mind?
SCOTT DIXON: You know, it was definitely on my mind a lot the week after. You had those flashbacks, for sure. I think it was a good piece of remotivation. You know, you then really understand that it's not that easy. You know, you definitely can't let your guard down. I think for me it definitely made me zero in again a little bit more and know that this is going to be a tough fight till the end.
So I think, you know, it's maybe a good thing, even though we lost a load of points.
Q. Helio said he was having so much fun out there. Was that the case with you?
SCOTT DIXON: It was fantastic, man. You know, the strategies, how they played out today, were crazy. You know, when you're racing and trying to make dives on people, you know, that are quite a ways back in the pack, people you didn't think you'd be racing, it was a lot of fun. You were racing there with Foyt, Moraes, T.K. was making dives, Rahal was making dives. It was all going on, man. I think at some point in turn 10, we were four or five wide going into 11.
I had a lot of fun. You know, the day was hectic right from the word 'go'. You know, it definitely was a fantastic race. As I said earlier, you know, the combination of all the fans and how enthusiastic they are, these are the races we need to come to.
THE MODERATOR: Scott, appreciate your time. Thank you.
SCOTT DIXON: Thank you.
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