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June 24, 2014 | By Verizon IndyCar Series
Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon and recently-crowned Indianapolis 500 champion Ryan Hunter-Reay are nominees in the "Best Driver" category for the annual ESPY Awards.
Voting is open until 9 p.m. (ET) July 16. Cast Your Vote Now
Andretti Autosport's Hunter-Reay earned the Best Driver award in 2013 after claiming his first Verizon IndyCar Series title -- and first by an American since Sam Hornish Jr. in 2006 -- in the dramatic 2012 season finale at Auto Club Speedway. He won the 98th Indianapolis 500 on May 25 in a late-race duel with three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves.
"It’s such an honor to be nominated again," Hunter-Reay said. "This is more exciting news following what was one of the most intense finishes in the history of the Indy 500. The list of ESPY nominees includes top athletes from around the world and in so many forms of sport. The ESPY we won following our Verizon IndyCar Series championship sits amongst the awards of my most significant accomplishments."
Dixon, driver of the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car, earned his third series title with a late-season run that saw him rally from a nearly 80-point deficit. He earned a victory in the opening round of the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston -- the penultimate event of the season -- and was runner-up in the second race. He finished fifth in 500-mile finale at Auto Club Speedway to claim the championship by 27 points over Castroneves.
“It was an incredible year for the No. 9 car and the whole Target team last year," said Dixon, who will compete this weekend at Houston. "The fields are so tight in the Verizon IndyCar Series right now, with the best drivers competing every weekend. 2013 marked a great final run by our team to come back and win the championship, and I’m honored to represent Target Chip Ganassi Racing as a nominee for the ESPY Award for Best Driver.”
Drake hosts the ESPY Awards, which will be broadcast on ESPN at 9 p.m. (ET) July 16 from the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles.