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INDYJune 28, 2003
American IndyCar Series Round 7
Richmond International Raceway

Tony Kanaan Takes Fifth, Holds on to Series Lead
Pit Scene Showing Kanaan, The Top Honda Driver in Fifth Place

Richmond, Virginia, steeped in history since the foundation of the USA, was the venue of Round 7 of this year's IndyCar Series. In the second night event of the season (starting at 20:00 local time) and on the shortest course of the series at 0.75 miles, the 250-lap race ended on lap 206 due to heavy rain. Tony Kanaan (Andretti Green Racing) drove tenaciously to take fifth place in his Honda Indy V8 Dallara, increasing his points tally to 247 and still heading the championship 27 points ahead of his nearest rival.

At Richmond International Raceway, located to the east of the downtown area of Richmond, the capital of the Southern army during the days of the American Civil War, over 50,000 fans were thrilled on Sunday by a classic IndyCar high speed side-by-side race, a short-track battle on this shortest course of the series with banks of 14 degrees.

Fourth in qualifying, Kanaan was in the top group from the very start of the race, finally crossing the line in fifth position and holding on to his lead in the series. Intense rain on lap 199 brought out a full course caution, before lap 206 saw the red flag and checkered flag come out at the same time. Pole sitter Scott Dixon led all the way from lap one to win the race, followed by the two Team Pensky drivers.

Of the other Honda Indy V8 drivers, Kenny Brack finished seventh in spite of some tyre trouble, while rookie Dan Weldon worked his way up to eighth by the end. Fellow rookie Roger Yasugawa took 11th position. Greg Ray has been showing some of his expected form in the second half of the season, and was battling within the leading group until he span off at the restart and lost a lap, eventually having to settle for 12th place. After making a comeback from injury in Round 6 at Pikes Peak, Dario Franchitti was ruled out of the rest of the season after further medical tests indicate he will have to undergo spinal surgery. He was replaced at Andretti Green Racing by Bryan Herta, who finished eighth in qualifying and drove in the top six for much of the race, finally crossing the line in 14th position after hitting the wall towards the end.

American IndyCar Series Round 7
Richmond International Raceway

1 Scott Dixon (Target Chip Ganassi Racing/G/T/F)
2 Helio Castroneves (Marlboro Team Penske/D/T/F)
3 Gil de Ferran (Marlboro Team Penske/D/T/F)
4 Sam Hornish Jr. (Pennzoil Panther Racing/D/C/F)
5 Tony Kanaan (Andretti Green Racing/D/H/F)
6 Felipe Giaffone (Hollywood Mo Nunn Racing/G/T/F)
7 Kenny Brack (Team Rahal/D/H/F)
8 Dan Wheldon (Andretti Green Racing/D/H/F)
9 Buddy Rice (Red Bull Cheever Racing/D/C/F)
10 Al Unser Jr. (Corteco/D/T/F)
11 Roger Yasukawa (Super Aguri Fernandez Racing/D/H/F)
12 Greg Ray (Access Motorsports/G/H/F)
14 Bryan Herta (Andretti Green Racing/D/H/F)

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