SAM HORNISH JR. WINS THRILLER AT CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY

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Sam Hornish Jr. defeated Scott Dixon and Bryan Herta to win the Delphi Indy 300 Sept. 7 at Chicagoland Speedway in the closest 1-2-3 finish in IRL IndyCar TM Series history.

Hornish, in the No. 4 Pennzoil Panther Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone, and third-place finisher Herta, in the No. 27 Archipelago/Motorola Dallara/Honda/Firestone, were separated by a mere .0100 of a second.

The previous record for a 1-2-3 finish came at Texas Motor Speedway in Oct. 2001 when Hornish defeated Scott Sharp and Robbie Buhl by .0468 of a second.

?It?s really exciting because you know the fans are getting the show of a lifetime, but it?s pretty nerve-wracking,? Hornish said. ?It was a tough race out there today. A lot of people were very close together. It was probably one of the closest as far as competitive fields that I've ever seen. It's exciting.

?The guys at Panther Racing have worked so hard this year; it's really great to take them back to victory lane again. While we're still 41 points out of the championship lead, when you get 52 for winning and leading the most laps, (and) you get 32 for sixth, anything is possible.

?We're just going to keep working as hard as we can and see if we can get ourselves back in here.?

It was Hornish?s 10th career IndyCar Series victory and his second of the season. He won the Belterra Casino Indy 300 Aug. 17 at Kentucky Speedway.

The margin of victory was .0099 of a second, the third-closest finish in IndyCar Series history. Hornish defeated Al Unser Jr. in 2002 at Chicagoland Speedway by .0024 of a second and defeated Helio Castroneves in Sept. 2002 at Texas Motor Speedway by .0096 of a second.

?It was a pretty rough day out there,? said Dixon, driver of the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Panoz G/Toyota/Firestone. ?The racing was great. It was getting pretty hairy there with three-wide occasionally.?

Herta, who earned his third consecutive third-place finish, agreed.

?It was a pretty adventurous day,? said Herta. ?I guess it?s fun. It would be more fun to watch it on TV. It?s high-risk fun, for sure. We just gave it everything we had, and that?s how it ended up.?

The only accident occurred on lap 120 of the 200-lap event, when Kenny Brack made contact with the outside retaining wall in the No. 15 Pioneer/Miller Lite Dallara/Honda/Firestone. He was unhurt.

With two races remaining, the top five in points are separated by just 41 points. Castroneves leads with 439, followed by Dixon (427), Kanaan (425), de Ferran (422), and Hornish (398). The IRL IndyCar Series Champion will be honored at the Championship Celebration Oct. 25 at EPCOT at Walt Disney World Resorts.

The next race on the IRL IndyCar Series schedule is the Toyota Indy 400 Sept. 21 at California Speedway.

Delphi Indy 300 Photos

RACE INFORMATION:
- Race Facts
- Entry List
- Qualifying Order
- Starting Line-Up
- Race Results

Chicagoland Speedway
500 Speedway Blvd, Joliet, Illinois 60433 Tickets & Information Call 888.629.RACE (7223)

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