Motorsport: Win puts Dixon in top 10 racers of all time

By Eric Thompson

Scott Dixon moved into the top 10 of all-time IndyCar winners. Photo / AP.
Scott Dixon moved into the top 10 of all-time IndyCar winners. Photo / AP.

By winning the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio, America, last weekend New Zealand IndyCar driver Scott Dixon moved into the top 10 of all-time IndyCar winners. The Kiwi now has 29 wins to his name and is tied with Rick Mears and he's still only 33.

If Dixon can keep driving for another seven to eight years he should be within touching distance of the drivers at the top of the tree - AJ Foyt, 67, Mario Andretti, 52 and Michael Andretti, 42.

Unusually for Dixon, he's only had two wins this season but a bucket load of problems. The Target Chip Ganassi Racing driver has been involved in accidents, hit the wall, had an engine failure, been hit with grid penalties and been held hostage to errors and other race quirks.

For some random reason, on the run in to the Mid-Ohio race last weekend, despite having everything bar the kitchen sink thrown at him, Dixon was still hanging tough in fourth place in the championship.

"I can't believe I'm still in with a chance of the title," said Dixon. "It's been quite a low scoring year and if [you] look at any other year this many races into the season, the top guys would have had 100 points or more than they currently have.

"I keep saying it's almost like a championship nobody wants to win."

Heading into Mid-Ohio Dixon was 60-odd points out of the series lead but after his fourth win there in six starts he's closed the gap to championship leader Will Power to just 28 points with third-place man Helio Castroneves a mere two points ahead and second Ryan Hunter-Reay a further 21 points up the road.

"It may not sound much but we're still going to have to have a pretty good end to the season over the next few races with a couple of the others having a bit of bad luck," said Dixon.

The Dallara DW12 being used for the first time this year has proved to be quick in practice and qualifying in Dixon's hands but race day has consistently thrown up a few curve balls.

"The car's been quick but Edmonton was a bit of a pisser. We were quick on a drying track using wets but Power fell of in front of Hinchciffe and he in turn backed up into me and we all got bounced.

"I messed up in Toronto and some of it's been up to us and some of it's been by outside causes like engine failure and the antistall messing up. But it's just motorsport and I'm only 32 so I've got a lot of motorsport left in me yet," said Dixon.

Speaking of years ahead in racing, Dixon's most recent contract with Target Chip Ganassi Racing is up for negotiation and he's in discussion with the team to sort out a new one.

"I've definitely got at least another good five years of racing in me yet and I'm just about agreed to an extension with the team for another two to three years, which will be good and it should be signed very soon.

"Both sides are happy and we've achieved a lot together. From my point of view I wouldn't want to move anywhere else," said Dixon.

There are three races to go in the series at Sonoma, a road course, Baltimore, a street course and Fontana, an oval. All three of which Dixon has a soft spot for.

"We were quick at Baltimore last year and [it's] a very good opportunity to get good points at the other two," said Dixon.

- NZ Herald

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