Top 10 IndyCar Driver of the Year 2011:
Auckland, New Zealand
Target Chip Ganassi Racing
For most of 2012, all the attention in the championship stakes was on the head-to-head battle between Dario Franchitti and Will Power for the title. Few barely even noticed that Scott Dixon was never far behind, keeping close to both of them, ready to pounce if the opportunity presented itself. While that chance never emerged, it demonstrated how effectively and efficiently Dixon goes about his season, putting in the performances and getting the results week-in and week-out.
The two-time IndyCar champion shares with another series veteran, Oriol Servia, the ability to just get the job done without making a big drama of it. Also like Servia, Dixon completed all 17 races of the 2011 season - finishing in the top 10 an incredible 13 times. Even better than Servia, he also claimed two pole positions during the year at Mid-Ohio and Motegi, and once he was presented with that clear road ahead of him off the grid and no need to worry about bruising the championship hopes of his team mate, he proved his point by promptly going on to win both events by a wide margin. The latter victory even gives Dixon a small but genuine place in the record books as the only open wheel driver to win on both the oval and road courses at Motegi.
Fittingly for all his good work, Dixon took home one of the three bits of IndyCar silverware available to drivers for their season's work - he claimed the AJ Foyt Trophy for scoring the most points on the oval tracks in 2011, leaving Power locking up the corresponding road race trophy and Franchitti to clinch the overall series crown for the fourth time.
Of course, Dixon wanted more than just third place in the championship for himself, but there's no sign of any decline in his abilities or moreover his appetite for racing. Will he be content to play the loyal team game again in 2012, or will he decide that it's about time it was his turn to win the races and to claim the title?
Top 10 IndyCar Driver of the Year 2011 results so far:
5. Oriol Servia
6. Ryan Briscoe
7. James Hinchcliffe
8. Graham Rahal
9. Ed Carpenter
10. JR Hildebrand