Zero. That’s the amount of laps led the Chip Ganassi Racing duo have led in the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season. But, don’t take them too lightly through. If a little bit of luck went on their side, both Scott Dixon and his new teammate Ed Jones could very easily be the championship favorites right now.
Dixon, has been very quiet out of the gates. But, he finished sixth and fourth respectively in the first two races of the season, and if not for an ill timed caution last weekend in Long Beach, he would have had a podium.
He heads to Barber with a vendetta to take up with the 2.3-mile track. Dixon, has seven top five finishes in eight career Barber starts. Five of those seven finishes were runner-up efforts in his No. 9 Honda. He’s also started third, fourth or fifth in every race on the Alabama road course.
“We’ve been coming to Barber since 2010, and it’s been a really good track for us, but we’ve yet to win it,” said Dixon ahead of this weekend’s race. “I think we’ve been on the podium nearly every race, with five or so of those being second-place finishes. It’s such a great event and you can really see what a great job the track does with the crowds growing year over year. Hopefully, this will be our year with the PNC Bank car.”
Dixon, has been quick all weekend, being third, sixth and third respectively in practice and qualifying his car in the Firestone Fast Six too.
Jones is due as well.
He finished eighth in the season opener at St. Pete. He just finished third last weekend in Long Beach. If not for crashing while running second with 21 laps-to-go at Phoenix two weeks ago, he could have three straight top eight finishes to start the year off.
“Obviously it was a great weekend for us at Long Beach (tying a career-best finish), so I’m really excited to get back in the NTT DATA car this week at Barber,” Jones said of his chances for this weekend. “We had great pit stops and strategy last weekend and I was extremely pleased with the result. I think I have a better understanding of what I need to do from the start to the finish of a race weekend in terms of getting the car right. We’re heading in the right direction as a team and I hope it’s the beginning of a string of very successful results and momentum.”
Jones starts 12th on Sunday.
That’s why we can’t judge the quietness of CGR and replace that with them struggling. They’re close and this weekend they could be propelled to victory.