Panther Racing rookie Hideki Mutoh took an exciting three-wide Indy Pro Series win at Kentucky Speedway tonight by 0.1023 of a second over series leader Alex Lloyd.

The Tokyo, Japan native, who qualified for the 100-mile affair with a series track record 191.276 (27.8551 seconds ) lap yesterday, earned his second series win of the season after leading a 66 of 67 laps in his No. 55 Panther Racing machine, but had to cross the finish line at the helm of a three-wide pack that included Lloyd in his No. 7 Lucas Oil/ Isilon Systems/ SSM Sam Schmidt Motorsports car and Wade Cunningham in No. 27 Automatic Fire Sprinklers machine.

"I'm really excited. I have been looking forward to winning an oval race," Mutoh said. "I'm really happy. I have to thank the team, they gave me a great racecar."

He earned his first victory of the season on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on June 16 and now owns a total of 10 top-five and 11 top-10 finishes this season.

Lloyd, who made his first career night start, registered his 11th top-five and top-10 finish of the season. He maintains the series championship lead and will hold a 98-point advantage over Mutoh entering the series' two-event weekend at Infineon Raceway Aug. 25-26.

Cunningham put together his sixth consecutive top-five series finish and his fifth top-two finish in that stretch.

Chris Festa closed out the race fourth in his No. 9 CGR Indy Pro Series machine and Andretti Green Racing product Jaime Camara guided his No. 11 Osofresh machine from its 20th-place starting spot to a fifth-place finish.

Kentucky Speedway will continue its season Oct. 13 when the Major League of Monster Trucks visits the track for the first time. High-horsepower machines will race on a custom-built dirt track constructed on the speedway infield. Tickets for the debut event are on sale now and can be reserved online at www.kentuckyspeedway.com, by phone at 888-652-RACE (7223), at Kentucky Speedway ticket offices located at 400 Buttermilk Pike, Suite 200, in Ft. Mitchell, Ky., and the Sparta, Ky., Fan Center off of Interstate 71 Exit 57 and Ky. Hwy. 35 N.

Story by Mike Schmaltz

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