Scott Dixon Dodges Chaos at Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix for 58th Career Win

scott dixon chevrolet detroit grand prix
Scott Dixon Dodges Chaos to Win IndyCar Detroit GPPenske Entertainment/Paul Hurley

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Scott Dixon turned a Chevrolet Grand Prix of Detroit that featured nearly as many caution laps as race laps into his 58th career race win and another step closer to a racing legend.

While Sunday's NTT IndyCar Series race wasn't nearly the edge-of-your-seat thriller that the previous week's Indianapolis 500 was, it proved to be a solid encore to last year's inaugural race on the streets of the Motor City after a run on Belle Isle dating back to 1992.

There were no last-lap heroics for the win, no series of jaw-dropping passes, but there was plenty of fan-pleasing crashing and banging as the caution-fest featured eight yellow flags and 47 of the 100 laps under caution. The 47 caution laps came during the first 73 laps of a race that struggled at times to find its legs.

scott dixon indycar detroit grand prix
Scott Dixon crosses the finish line in Detroit with race runner-up Marcus Ericsson in hot pursuit. Penske Entertainment/Paul Hurley

By comparison, last year's race featured seven laps for 32 laps of caution.


There were also 12 penalties in the race.

"I don't think it's ever embarrassing," Dixon said when he asked if a 100-lap race with 47 caution laps and high number of penalties was a bad look for the series. "I think you do a survey, most people go to races to watch crashes. I don't.

"I know when I watch some kind of NASCAR race, they have a similar kind of effect. It's obviously exciting. Obviously you don't want to see the caution laps and them taking over."

This one went green for good on Lap 74 with Dixon leading the field, and he held the top spot the rest of the way. Marcus Ericsson passed Marcus Armstrong for second place on Lap 99 to cap a spirited battle for the runner-up spot.

indycar results detroit

"There's always the variables, staying out of trouble or trying to keep the car on track," said Dixon, who won for the second time this season and the second time on a street course (Long Beach). "We had rain. You never know how the transitions are going to fall or even the strategy. So, for everybody on the team that was cool."

Dixon's final margin of victory over Ericsson was 0.8567 second. Armstrong finished 4.9129 seconds back.

The only pass of significance for Dixon over that final stint of green-flag racing was a move past the lapped car of Colton Herta with five laps to go. That pass cleared the path to victory on the tight, bumpy, and at times a bit slick circuit.

Ericsson said the race, which included a brief mid-race rain shower that had teams scrambling to make tire decision, was as chaotic in the cockpit as it looked on TV.

"I think people are driving reckless on the restarts," Ericsson said. "I don't know if we need to look at how we steward these kind of races. I think today more than 50% (of the race was) on yellow. I'm sure it was dramatic and fun to watch.

"At some point also we need to have a bit of a better standard. We're one of the best racing series in the world. We shouldn't be driving on top of each other every single restart. Obviously I haven't seen the race, I was just driving it. I saw in my mirrors every time on the restart, four, five-wide. I was just praying not to get hit pretty much every restart."

Closing on A.J.

The Detroit win was the 58th career victory for Dixon and pulled him to within nine wins of A.J. Foyt for all-time Indy car wins. The six-time series champion also took over the IndyCar points lead as he makes his latest run at Foyt's all-time record of seven season championships.

The 43-year-old Dixon knows that he is running out of opportunities at that No. 1 spot on those lists.

"For sure," Dixon said. "Until you're out of it, you've got to keep chasing it. It's a team effort. No one single person does it by themselves."

Party Poopers

The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix circuit is famous for being in the shadow of General Motors' world headquarters.

Honda, however, crashed the party, sweeping the top-four finishing positions with Dixon, Ericsson, Armstrong and Kyle Kirkwood.

"Cool to see (General Motors U.S. vice president, Performance Vehicles and Motorsports) Jim Campbell hand me the trophy today," Dixon said. "Obviously they don't want to do that."

Dixon later this month will be racing with GM in its Cadillac program at Le Mans.

"I think what is very cool is both manufacturers, you cross over," Dixon said. "I know it's not an easy thing. It's difficult for them to do it. Probably more so for Honda just because that's my real job, day job is IndyCar racing. I get to have some fun four or five times a year with Cadillac."

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Scott Dixon powers through the streets of Detroit on Sunday. Penske Entertainment/James Black

Where's the Fountain?

Dixon's win was his fourth in Detroit, after he won on Belle Isle in 2012, 2018 and 2019. Those previous races ended with a tradition celebration dip into the James Scott Memorial Fountain located on the island.

And, no, there's not diving into the Detroit River that lines a good part of the Detroit Grand Prix race circuit.

"Any win feels awesome, man," Dixon said. "I would say there's no fountain to jump into, which is definitely a bit different. Some people rode the lions (in the fountains) and stuff. That was put to a stop after Hunter-Reay.

"It's cool. It's a new venue, this is kind of going back to historic Detroit, downtown city racing. I have to say a huge thanks to all the fans. It was cool to do the parade lap and look up. On top of all the buildings, it was just lined with people. It was pretty fantastic. That is difficult, especially when it looks like there's going to be a lot of rain.

"Any win is special. It's kind of cool to win in two different places."