News & Multimedia

Dixon seeking to call it 'job accomplished'

HOUSTON -- The IZOD IndyCar Series championship scenario was easy to digest by new points leader Scott Dixon, who finished first and second in the 90-lap races Oct. 5-6 that constituted the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston.

Finish fifth in the 250-lap twilight MAVTV 500 INDYCAR World Championships at Auto Club Speedway on Oct. 19 and, no matter the result posted by Helio Castroneves, he’ll secure his third series title.

It’s the eighth consecutive year that the series champion will be decided in the season finale.

“It’s really going to come down to the wire,” said Dixon, who claimed the prize in 2003 and ‘08. “It’s going to be the last lap, last corner kind of situation that we’ll expect. At least I hope it ends that way. You don’t want somebody crashing out on Lap 3 or even midway through the race.

“(Castroneves is) strong at the big oval, definitely speed?wise. I think both engine manufacturers have got some updates for Fontana. So we'll probably see a lot of grid penalties before the race (for unapproved engine changes). It’s going to be a fun race. 

“We’ve got a lot of work to do, but we’ve got to go with the mindset of trying to win the race. If you can do that and be on the top three in the podium, then job accomplished.”

Dixon accomplished his task on the 1.634-mile, 10-turn circuit at Reliant Parka with a 74-point swing. He takes a 25-point advantage into the last of the season’s 19 races.

“I think we had a good shot of making the points level coming out of here,” Dixon said following his runner-up finish to Team Penske’s Will Power in Race 2. “But to make that gain, I think we as a team know that we have potential to have a good shot at winning both races, especially street courses at the moment.

“But you can never predict, basically, how the competition is going to be or the problems they may have. I feel bad for Helio with the weekend that he had. You see most of the championship contenders have problems throughout the year, and he’s been pretty consistent throughout the year up until now.”

Castroneves entered the weekend riding a streak of 12 races in which he finished in the top 10 and had been the only driver to complete all 2,003 laps. He took the outright points lead with a victory at Texas Motor Speedway and held it for nine races over four months.

But the No. 3 Team Penske entry developed mechanical issues early in both races, which relegated the three-time Indianapolis 500 champion to 18th- and 23rd-place finishes.

“I feel bad for the team because they’ve worked so hard to get us in a position to win this championship,” said Castroneves, who started on the pole for the Race 2 standing start as a rainstorm washed out the 30-minute morning qualifying session and the lineup was set by entrant points. “And there is still a lot of racing left. We know we have a strong car in Fontana. We were fast in the test there (Sept. 24) and we will definitely be going for it.”

Both drivers have had moderate success at the 2-mile D-shaped oval with 14 degrees of banking in the turns.


* 2012 – Qualified fifth and started 15th because of a 10 grid spot penalty for unapproved engine change. Led 15 laps and finished third.
* 2005 – Started 15th and finished 10th.
* 2004 – Started second and finished eighth.
* 2003 – Started third and finished second. Led 13 laps.


* 2012 – Started 10th and finished 17th. Led two laps.
* 2005 – Started sixth and finished ninth.
* 2004 – Started first and finished seventh. Led 145 laps.
* 2003 – Started first and finished sixth. Led 39 laps.

Ed Carpenter won the 2012 race in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka car for Ed Carpenter Racing. The first INDYCAR race at the 2-mile oval was won by Sam Hornish Jr. in 2002. Eddie Cheever Jr. was the pole sitter.

Other winners: Hornish in 2003, Adrian Fernandez in 2004, Dario Franchitti in 2005. The 2012 and ’05 races were season finales, while the other two were the penultimate races of the season.

The standings heading into the final race the past five seasons:

2008 -- Dixon 606  Castroneves 576
2009 -- Dixon 570  Franchitti 565
2010 -- Power 587  Franchitti 575
2011 -- Power 542  Franchitti 531
2012 -- Power 453 Hunter-Reay 436

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Bragging Rights, Big Prize At Stake In Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge
Dixon seeking to call it 'job accomplished'
HOUSTON -- The IZOD IndyCar Series championship scenario was easy to digest by new points leader Scott Dixon, who finished first and second in the 90-lap races Oct. 5-6 that constituted the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston.
Read More
Related Media
Pippa Mann
Mann, Cancer Survivors Transform IMS Start/Finish Line
In recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Pippa Mann, who has driven the pink-and-white Susan G. Komen car in the past two Indianapolis 500 Mile Races, IMS president J. Douglas Boles and a group of breast cancer survivors got on their knees with paint rollers and applied the colorful change.
Read More
Justin Wilson
Watch Streaming of 'Celebrating the Life of Justin Wilson' at 4 p.m. ET Sept. 29 on
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway will host "Celebrating the Life of Justin Wilson" at 4 p.m. ET Sept. 29. The event is open only to members of the racing community, but fans can watch via live streaming on
Read More
Justin Wilson
Online Auction Benefits Wilson Children's Fund
Through eBay's direct involvement, all transaction fees will be waived and all proceeds will be deposited straight into the Wilson Children's Fund, which benefits Wilson’s wife Julia and daughters Jane and Jessica. Fans who sell their own Wilson-related items on eBay can designate the Graham Rahal Foundation as their chosen charity and proceeds will be donated to the fund as well.
Read More
Matt Kenseth
Monday Racing Roundup: Kenseth Wins as Chase Field Set
Leading 352 of 400 laps in a race he owned from the outset, Kenseth pulled away from Kyle Busch after a restart with 18 laps left and won the Federated Auto Parts 400 by .951 of a second over his teammate.
Read More
Justin Wilson
Justin Wilson Children's Fund Update
INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway encourage racing fans to make donations to a new fund established to support the family of Justin Wilson. Donations to the Wilson Children's Fund can be made online at or sent to the following address:
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 287
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at
Latest Tweets
.@PippaMann was at IMS with Breast Cancer #survivors, do you remember her first #Indy500 -
about 46 minutes ago