Rossi wins IndyCar race at Mid-Ohio

Los Angeles (AFP) –


Alexander Rossi's pit stop strategy gamble paid off Sunday as the Andretti Autosport driver won the Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio in Lexington ahead of Canadian Robert Wickens.

Rossi led 66 of the 90 laps around Mid-Ohio's 2.258-mile (3.63 Km), 13-turn course. The only driver to make just two stops instead of three, Rossi finished 12.8285 seconds in front of Wickens, with Australian Will Power third for Penske and teammate Josef Newgarden fourth.

It was the second straight day that a tactical decision pushed Rossie to the fore.

He ran just one timed lap in the decisive round of qualifying on Saturday to claim pole position, and followed up with his second win of the season.

He moved into second behind New Zealand's Scott Dixon in the championship chase after 13 of 17 races.

Dixon, who finished fifth, leads the standings with 494 points to Rossi's 448. Newgarden is third on 434.

Wickens, the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports rookie, matched his best finish of the season.

France's Sebastien Bourdais, starting last after crashing in qualifying on Saturday, carved through the field to finish sixth -- his best finish since a fourth place in the IndyCar Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course in May.

The IndyCar Series resumes on August 19 at Pocono Raceway.