Dixon's slow burn

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:49 AM ET

Scott Dixon didn't win the race, but he did regain the IndyCar series points lead.

Even so, the defending series champion was not overly impressed with his third-place finish.

"It wasn't too bad. I think definitely the Target Car No. 9 was quick, probably on new tires," Dixon said.

"The later parts of the stint we really struggled to hold the grip on the car in the last 10 laps.

"It made it definitely a long day and a very physical day to try to hold on to it."

Dixon started in the second row alongside Helio Castroneves after qualifing fourth the day before.

He spent most of the day trying to reel in the leaders, which he managed to do when they got tied up in traffic later on the race.

"Some of these guys just don't get it. Marco (Andretti), (Alex) Tagliani and Ed (Carpenter) at the end there, they're not racing us, so get out of the way," Dixon said.

"It's frustrating because it's good for me at some points, but then it ruins things in others.

"It's pretty hard, because when you get close and get up on these guys, it's hard to get around them.

"Lap traffic was very annoying today. Lots of guys that just shouldn't have been racing with us and they made it very tough."

Slower drivers are expected to get out of the way when being lapped by the leaders.

However, at times they refused to yield, and Andretti nearly caused a couple of accidents as the leaders were trying to blow around him.

"I think a few of the other drivers had more of a problem with Marco, which actually helped me," Dixon said.

"I was able to close the gap when they were stuck behind him.

"But it's just frustrating when you see even Marco racing Will into a corner into Turn 1 and kind of putting a block on."

Dixon was able to momentarily take the lead when the leaders pitted, but he lost it when Power was able to beat him into Turn 1 coming out of the pit.

He then had his own troubles getting around slower traffic.

"Tagliani I think, really hurt my race," Dixon said.

"Especially in the middle stint there. I was running fairly well until I got stuck behind him and it took him probably eight or 10 laps to let me by.

"It's a wide track, but really there's only one line where you can grip it.

"If you get off line, it's very slippery and we just didn't have the chance to try to dive under some of these guys and try to pass.

"It's racing, it's part of it and what goes around, comes around.

"There might be a day where they need some help, and they're not going to get it."

With 10 laps left in the race, Dixon lost second spot to Castroneves, who was able to take more momentum into Turn 11.

"The 14 car (Ryan Hunter-Reay) was trying to race the 20 (Ed Carpenter) into the corner," he said.

"I don't know why, he was probably six laps down and was trying to win the race.

"Some of these guys are doing stupid stuff. I got caught up in it a bit too when Helio got a bit more of a run and got me in at the turn and that was it."

Dixon was defending his title in Edmonton having won the event last year.

"It was definitely tough, it was one of the toughest races out there," Dixon said.

"I think St. Peter and Mid-Ohio are others that are very tough as well.

"It definitely took it out of you."


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