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INDYCAR NEWS 

Justin Wilson earns first IndyCar oval win for himself and Dale Coyne Racing at Texas after Graham Rahal's mistake

Justin Wilson wins at TexasA late mistake by Graham Rahal helped Justin Wilson to take his first oval win in a dramatic IndyCar race at Texas on Saturday night.

Wilson had been closing in on Rahal over the final laps when the Ganassi driver clipped the wall two laps before the end, allowing Wilson to slip underneath him and take the victory, which was also his Dale Coyne Racing team's first ever oval triumph and only its second win in the series.

"It's just fantastic," said Wilson. "I just can't believe we managed to pull this off. The car was fantastic. And on the long runs, it just got better and better. I saw people sliding around and knew I just had to hit my marks."

Rahal was able to hang on for second, but took little consolation from the result.

"I just made a mistake," he said. "The car was pushing through the centre of Turns 3 and 4 pretty well the last stint, and it would kind of grip up for me late in the corner.

"I stayed with it, because they told me Justin was coming. So I was trying to pick up the pace a little bit, and it just never gripped up and I didn't give myself enough of a margin for error. I own up to it, and we'll come back and we'll win one here, and I certainly feel like it should have been today."

Penske's Ryan Briscoe took third, reporting afterwards that he did not have enough grip to keep pushing in the latter stages of the race.

"The guys put me in position to win tonight," he said. "I had the lead, I just didn't have the car to bring it home and stay in front. It's disappointing, but I had a huge moment out there at one point tonight and I'll take third."

Aero tweaks introduced by the series to break up the pack racing that has long been a hallmark of the 1.5-mile ovals delivered a race where the drivers were visibly struggling to hold on to their cars, resulting in constant position changes through the field.

Ganassi's Scott Dixon was in control during the early phases and appeared to have sufficient pace throughout each stint to hold his advantage to the end. But the New Zealander made a rare error when he lost the rear and spun into the Turn 4 wall on lap 173. Team-mate and series champion Dario Franchitti also had a difficult race, finishing three laps down after making an unscheduled pitstop halfway through the first stint.

Other standout incidents from an evening filled with them included a drive-through penalty for Will Power (Penske), who was judged to have unfairly blocked KV Racing's Tony Kanaan after a late restart. Power had earlier worked his way back into contention after dropping to the back of the field when he made an extra pitstop early on, but eventually had to settle for finishing a lap down in eighth.

Kanaan also had a busy evening, finishing the race with one of team-mate Rubens Barrichello's nosecones fitted to his car after needing two front wing changes. The latter was the result of contact while duelling with Power, while the earlier damage was caused by the manual jack in the pits following an airjack failure.

Mechanical problems and accidents combined to produce the race's high attrition rate, with Charlie Kimball and Takuma Sato hitting the wall early on, while Simona de Silvestro and Barrichello were both non-starters after developing problems on the dummy grid.

Results - 228 laps:

Pos  Driver               Team/Car                     Time/Gap
 1.  Justin Wilson        Coyne DW12-Honda        1h59m02.0131s
 2.  Graham Rahal         Ganassi DW12-Honda          + 3.9202s
 3.  Ryan Briscoe         Penske DW12-Chevy           + 5.8619s
 4.  James Hinchcliffe    Andretti DW12-Chevy        + 10.4511s
 5.  JR Hildebrand        Panther DW12-Chevy         + 18.7749s
 6.  Simon Pagenaud       Schmidt DW12-Honda         + 21.3883s
 7.  Helio Castroneves    Penske DW12-Chevy             + 1 lap
 8.  Will Power           Penske DW12-Chevy             + 1 lap
 9.  Alex Tagliani        Herta DW12-Honda              + 1 lap
10.  James Jakes          Coyne DW12-Honda              + 1 lap
11.  Tony Kanaan          KV DW12-Chevy                 + 1 lap
12.  Ed Carpenter         Carpenter DW12-Chevy          + 1 lap
13.  Josef Newgarden      Fisher DW12-Honda            + 2 laps
14.  Dario Franchitti     Ganassi DW12-Honda           + 3 laps
15.  Katherine Legge      Dragon DW12-Chevy            + 4 laps
16.  Mike Conway          Foyt DW12-Honda              + 4 laps
17.  Marco Andretti       Andretti DW12-Chevy          + 6 laps

Retirements:

     Scott Dixon          Ganassi DW12-Honda           173 laps
     EJ Viso              KV DW12-Chevy                129 laps
     Oriol Servia         Panther/DRR DW12-Chevy        89 laps
     Ryan Hunter-Reay     Andretti DW12-Chevy           66 laps
     Takuma Sato          Rahal DW12-Honda              63 laps
     Charlie Kimball      Ganassi DW12-Honda            29 laps
     Rubens Barrichello   KV DW12-Chevy                  0 laps
     Simona de Silvestro  HVM DW12-Lotus                 0 laps
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