(SAN FRANCISCO, CA) – Less than 24 hours after claiming the fourth Verizon IndyCar Series championship of his career, Scott Dixon was officially minted as the 2015 series champion.
Dixon, who won the 2015 crown with a come-from-behind win at the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma on August 30, was honoured along with other drivers, teams, and manufacturers during the Verizon IndyCar Series Championship Celebration at the Nob Hill Masonic Center in downtown San Francisco.
Scott Dixon’s dramatic victory in the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma earned the Target Chip Ganassi Racing driver his fourth career Verizon IndyCar Series championship on a tiebreaker over Juan Pablo Montoya.
Dixon, 35, delivered the 100th Indy car victory for Chip Ganassi Racing Teams and the team’s 11th championship. He joins A.J. Foyt, Mario Andretti, Sebastien Bourdais and Dario Franchitti as drivers with at least four championships. It was Dixon’s 38th Indy car win, which is one behind Al Unser for fourth all time.
Montoya, who finished sixth in the race, and Dixon tied with 556 points.
Dixon, who started ninth in the 85-lap race on the 2.385-mile, 12-turn Sonoma Raceway road course, won the tiebreaker because he had more wins during the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series season. The victory was his third (Long Beach, Texas, and Sonoma) of the 16-race season.
Montoya earned a total of two victories (St. Petersburg and the Indianapolis 500) in the No. 2 Team Penske Chevrolet.
Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman and Company, parent of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, presented Dixon and team owner Chip Ganassi with a $1 million championship bonus check and replicas of the Astor Challenge Cup, the Verizon IndyCar Series’ championship trophy.
“I’m fortunate to drive in INDYCAR and with this team for 14 years,” Dixon said. “With the depth of the competition, winning a championship in INDYCAR is challenging and gratifying. It’s all the small pieces that you have to get out of the car, and this year especially with the introduction of the aero kits. As a team, I think we really do a good job. I couldn’t be prouder of the whole team’s efforts.”
In addition to the championship bonus, Dixon accepted the Jostens Champions Award, a ring valued at $10,000. He also won the Sunoco Diamond Performance Award and its $75,000 prize for winning the most races.
Blair Julian, chief mechanic for Dixon’s No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, accepted the Verizon IndyCar Series Chief Mechanic of the Year Award. Scott Harner and Barry Wanser accepted the Team Manager of the Year Award.
Gabby Chaves of BHA with Curb-Agajanian accepted the $50,000 Verizon IndyCar Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award, Graham Rahal claimed the $25,000 TAG Heuer “Don’t Crack Under Pressure Award” for advancing the most cumulative places during the season. Will Power won the Verizon P1 Award for scoring the most points among pole winners, Ryan Hunter-Reay claimed the “Drive to the Finish” Award, and the late Justin Wilson was voted favourite driver by Verizon IndyCar Series fans.
Jim Campbell, Chevrolet’s vice president of performance vehicles and motorsports, accepted the manufacturer’s award on behalf of Chevrolet.
Juan Pablo Montoya of Team Penske was honoured as the second-place finisher in the championship while his teammate Power was honoured for finishing third.