INDIANAPOLIS – It’s hard to believe, but as we head to Sunday’s 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500 (11 a.m. ET/ABC/INDYCAR Radio Network) neither of the two Chip Ganassi Racing drivers have led a lap through the first five races of the Verizon IndyCar Series season. But, here Scott Dixon is fourth in the standings and well within striking distance.
That should be scary for the rest of the field. Chip Ganassi said on Fast Friday that he’s happy with where they are right now and they haven’t even entered their normal peak time yet.
This season has been very unScott Dixon like though. He’s had two starts of 17th or worse. But, those have resulted in his two best races thus far. He brought his No. 9 Honda home runner-up in the INDYCAR Grand Prix two weeks ago, his best finish of 2018. He’d roll off 18th that day. In Phoenix back in April, he started 17th and finished fourth.
Both he and new teammate Ed Jones are looking to end not just the lack of laps led in 2018 streak, but Ganassi’s overall winless streak at Indy. The team has won 103 INDYCAR races and 11 championships. Six of those 11 titles have come since 2008. They’ve arguably been one of INDYCAR’s top teams, if not THE top team over the last decade. They’ve even won four Indy 500’s to their credit, all since 1999. In fact, three of those four came in a five year span from 2008 through 2012.
They haven’t won a ‘500 since.
In their defense though, not many teams other than Andretti Autosport has. They’ve won three of the last four years, while Team Penske and KVSH Racing took the other two crowns since 2013.
This could be the year though that they do so. Dixon, has been quick. He was one of just two Honda’s to make the Firestone Fast Nine and will start in that ninth position on Sunday. He was in the top seven in three of the first four sessions of race practice last week and says that his race pace should be pretty good.
Jones, should have been the Rookie of the Year in this race last year as he finished third with Dale Coyne Racing. Imagine what he could do with a Ganassi car.