Dixon sure fuel glitch cost him pole
|By Matt Beer||Sunday, May 22nd 2011, 10:52 GMT|
Scott Dixon is sure that the Ganassi team's fuel error cost him pole position for the Indianapolis 500, but said he would not hold it against his crew any more than they would resent a driver making a mistake.
Both Ganassi cars ran low on fuel at the end of their runs in the 'Fast Nine' pole shoot-out, with Dixon slowing from a pace that looked set to give him pole but still getting second, while Dario Franchitti fell right back to ninth on the grid as he ran dry on his last lap.
"Dario obviously missed on fuel a little more than what we did," said Dixon. "I ran out just getting to Turn 4. I think that cost us the pole.
"We had 227.5s across the board for the whole three laps to start with, and going into [Turn] 3 looking at my splits on my wheel, I was the same or if not up on those laps, even before I ran out of gas, and we lost nine tenths of a mile an hour on the last lap.
"A bit frustrating, and I know Dario is a probably a little more ticked off than what I am. To come so close and not quite get it was real frustrating."
Dixon said he felt no need to make a big deal out of the fuel drama.
"Obviously mistakes happen, and I made a mistake early in my qualifying run this morning where I almost spun and had to do a big lift in [Turn] 3, which happens," he said.
"I think with the big downtime, almost two and a half, three hours from the rain delay, that kind of stuff, maybe the engine had too many warm-ups, chewed through the gas quite a bit, and it kind of seems to me that what we missed by is maybe one engine warm-up on fuel and we didn't calculate for that. Dario's was a little more, as I said earlier.
"Yeah, it's frustrating, but it goes back to that saying that most of us hate: 'that's racing.'"
Despite being confident he was on course for pole before running out of fuel, Dixon said surprise pole-winner Alex Tagliani deserved full credit for his achievement.
"Not to obviously take anything away from Tagliani. He did a fantastic job," Dixon said. "It's a team that he put together a few years ago, and obviously to see them so strong and take the pole, I feel real happy for him and what he's achieved."