An exhausted Scott Dixon described yesterday’s Nashville race as one of the most tiring races on the IndyCar calendar.
The Kiwi survived a lengthy, crash-filled race to finish second behind teammate Marcus Ericsson.
He also vaults up to second in the driver’s standings with five races remaining.
The race was littered with numerous caution periods and two red flags, with the total race time ticking over three hours.
“Mentally, I think this was one of the most draining races on the schedule,” Dixon said.
“With all the cautions and even two red flags, it was tough to focus on what you needed to do, strategy-wise.
“Kudos to Honda, Marcus [Ericsson], the Chip Ganassi team, and my guys in the pits.
“I think [Ericsson] had probably one of the most eventful days of everybody out there, flying up in the sky, then getting a drive-through penalty and all that stuff, coming out with a win.”
Dixon’s strategy meant he completed the final 45 laps on a single set of tyres.
The call allowed Dixon to jump ahead of several cars yet left him battling with ageing tyres in the last few laps.
“We did almost 50 laps on that last set of tyres,” he said.
“It was a good call and gained us a bunch of positions but made the car difficult to hold onto at the end of the race.
“I was just hanging on, man. The rear tyres were definitely pretty shot.”
The narrow, bumpy Nashville circuit certainly left its mark yesterday.
It was one of the wildest races in recent IndyCar history.
Overtaking proved achievable yet challenging to execute, something Dixon would like to see tweaked for next year’s race.
“Everybody was cheering. Cars were crashing. Everything was going on.
“I think from the fan’s perspective, they had a ball.
“Maybe next year, I think there may be some areas of the track that can change a little bit that would create some passing zones, maybe make the racing a little bit better.
“It’s a tricky track. It’s really difficult.”
Dixon heads to Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend for the second of three consecutive races.