Dixons Springs Into Championship Mode With Three Straight Wins
Added by Amy Spivey on July 18, 2013.
Photo credit: IndyCar.com
After the two-race weekend in Toronto, IndyCar teams have a couple weeks off to recover and prepare for the next race at Mid-Ohio on August 4. Most of them will welcome the break, but Scott Dixon probably wants to be at Ohio today given the performances he’s had recently.
The New Zealand native is riding a huge wave of momentum after notching three straight wins, including both races on the streets of Toronto this past weekend. Dixon is the first driver to find victory lane in consecutive races in 2013 and has tied James Hinchcliffe for most wins on the season. He also jumped to second in points.
Dixon’s surge put him in the thick of the championship battle and gives Chip Ganassi Racing a chance to reclaim the IndyCar title. 2012 was rather dismal for the organization, which saw its drivers win four consecutive championships from 2008-2011. Dixon turned in the best overall performance last year, but two wins couldn’t erase a season of inconsistent finishes, and he finished third in points.
2013 has been markedly better, and Dixon, who is rarely far from the top of the IndyCar standings, is again leading the charge for the Ganassi squad. But the 32-year-old faces a big challenge if he wants to win his third IndyCar championship.
Current points leader Helio Castroneves has been stellar all season and shows no signs of wearing down. The Penske wheelman has only finished outside of the top ten once this season when he came in 13th at Sao Paulo. One victory might not seem impressive compared to Dixon’s three, but Castroneves can take the title if he simply stays on par with his competition.
Right now, the four drivers are poised to fight for the IndyCar championship are Castroneves, Dixon, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti. Hunter-Reay lost significant ground after bad outings at Pocono and Toronto, and Andretti just hasn’t had good enough results to beat out his competition. That leaves Dixon in a prime spot to challenge Castroneves as the season hits the home stretch.
While the campaign is far from over, there’s no room for failure with just six races remaining. Dixon’s winning streak is coming at a great time, but he has to keep up the pace. If Castroneves continues with solid, consistent finishes, he’ll bring home his first IndyCar championship. But if he falters, Dixon can sweep in and add a third ring to his collection.