• Scott Dixon recovers from Saturday race crash to win Sunday finale
  • Marcus Ericsson completes 1-2 result for Honda
  • Honda drivers take nine of top-10 finishing positions

 

DETROIT, Mich. (June 2, 2019) – Recovering in the best possible fashion from a crash and last-place finish in Saturday’s opening race, Scott Dixon gambled on running a longer opening stint than many of his rivals, led a race-high 44 laps, and won Sunday’s second round of the Dual in Detroit doubleheader NTT IndyCar Series weekend.  The victory was the first of the season for Dixon, and the Honda driver’s 45th career IndyCar win.

 

Starting sixth on the softer compound Firestone “Red” sidewall tires, Dixon’s Chip Ganassi Racing team avoided the temptation of pitting during a very early, Lap 1 caution, enabling the defending series champion to complete the 70-lap race distance on just two pit stops.  Once in the lead for the third and final time on Lap 50, Dixon remained in front for the final 20 laps to the checkered flag, despite a total of five caution periods during the incident-filled race.

 

Formula One veteran, but Indy car rookie, Marcus Ericsson had his best finish of the season, taking second in his Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda.  Ericsson was consistently one of the quickest of the “early pit stop” drivers, working his way from 12th on the grid to second at the race’s Lap 35 midpoint.  In the final laps, while unable to challenge Dixon for the win, Ericsson easily held off former series champion Will Power to hold on to second.

 

Honda drivers claimed nine of the top 10 finishing positions today, with Andretti Autosport teammates Ryan Hunter-Reay, Alexander Rossi and Marco Andretti finishing fourth through sixth respectively.  Hunter-Reay managed to stay at the head of the inter-team contest despite a deflating rear tire during the final three laps.

 

Starting 22nd and last after transmission problems in qualifying, Graham Rahal also employed the two-pit-stop strategy used by Dixon to great effect, finishing seventh after a determined run from the rear of the field.  Zach Veach brought his Andretti Autosport Honda home eighth for the second consecutive day.

 

Sebastien Bourdais finished ninth, despite damaging the nose and front wings of his Honda after contact with Spencer Pigot on Lap 13.  Bourdais’ Dale Coyne team was able to repair the damage while keeping him on the lead lap and he then put in a stirring recovery drive.  Teammate Santino Ferrucci was another IndyCar Series rookie to shine today, leading 20 laps – second only to Dixon – before finishing 10th

 

Next

Indy car’s five-week run of consecutive May-June event weekends concludes next week, as the series heads south to Dallas-Fort Worth for Round Nine and the first night race of the 2019 season, the DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, June 8.

 

Social media content and video links from this weekend’s Honda IndyCar Series action in Detroit – and companion Acura Motorsports sports car racing activities – are available on the HPD Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD) channels.  Produced by the Carolinas Production Group, YouTube video packages can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV

 

 

Quotes

Scott Dixon (Andretti Autosport Honda) Started sixth, finished first; first IndyCar Series win of 2019, 45th career victory: “Most of it was trying to keep the tires up to temperature [during the caution flags]. It was such a tricky situation, especially on the ‘blacks’ [harder compound primary tires] when they had a few laps on them.  I can’t thank the PNC Bank crew enough.  It was a rough day yesterday [with a crash in Saturday’s race] and I had a pretty good headache today and my wrist was pretty sore after that one.  I just drove the wheels off it and they did all the strategy.  The strategy is what nailed it and it feels fantastic.  I’m just happy for Honda and the whole PNC team.  We won in Detroit, it’s awesome.”

 

Marcus Ericsson (Arrow Schmidt Peterson Honda) Started 12th, finished second; career-best IndyCar finish in rookie season: “It was amazing.  My first podium since 2013 [racing in GP2].  I just have to thank everyone at Arrow SPM and Honda, they work so hard all year.  You know, we’ve had so much bad luck earlier this season, and I’ve made some mistakes as well.  To finally get a result like this and be on the podium I think is a great reward for all the hard work.  Now we can build on this.”

 

Ted Klaus (president, Honda Performance Development) on today’s second race of the weekend in Detroit: “It was great to see Scott Dixon and the entire Chip Ganassi Racing team shake off the effects of the crash in yesterday’s race and perform so perfectly today.  It was a complete team effort and a richly deserved victory.  Congratulations also to Marcus Ericsson on his second-place run today, he seems to have found a home here in Indy car racing and we’re very happy to have him driving for us.  Finally, a shout-out to Santino Ferrucci for leading 20 laps today and showing both confidence and maturity while in the lead. This was a great weekend for Honda, Acura and HPD, with victories in IMSA, IndyCar and the Baja 500.  Now we focus forward to Texas next week.”

 

 

NTT IndyCar Series Detroit Grand Prix

Circuit:             Belle Isle Park (2.35-mile temporary street circuit) Detroit, Mich.

2018 Winners:  Scott Dixon (Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) 99.285 mph average, Race 1, Saturday

                       Ryan Hunter-Reay (Andretti Autosport Honda) 105.176 mph average, Race 2, Sunday

Weather:         Partly sunny, mild, 70 degrees F

 

Top-10 Race Results:

Fn.

St.

Driver

Team

Manufacturer

Laps

Notes

1.

4.

Scott Dixon

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

70

Mph average

2.

12.

Marcus Ericsson-R

Arrow Schmidt Peterson

Honda

70

+1.9419 seconds

3.

11.

Will Power

Team Penske

Chevrolet

70

4.

15.

Ryan Hunter-Reay

Andretti Autosport

Honda

70

 

5.

2.

Alexander Rossi

Andretti Autosport

Honda

70

 

6.

19.

Marco Andretti

Andretti Autosport

Honda

70

 

7.

22.

Graham Rahal

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

Honda

70

8.

3.

Zach Veach

Andretti Autosport

Honda

70

 

9.

9.

Sebastien Bourdais

DCR with Vasser-Sullivan

Honda

70

 

10.

17.

Santino Ferrucci-R

Dale Coyne Racing

Honda

70

 

Other Honda Results

12.

4.

Colton Herta-R

Harding Steinbrenner Rcg

Honda

70

Running

13.

16.

Takuma Sato

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

Honda

70

Running

17.

7.

Felix Rosenqvist-R

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

58

Did not finish – crash

18.

5.

James Hinchcliffe

Arrow Schmidt Peterson

Honda

52

Did not finish – contact