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June 24, 2015

Scott Dixon

THE MODERATOR:テつ Welcome, everyone, to today's IndyCar media conference call.テつ We're pleased to be joined today by Verizon IndyCar Series driver Scott Dixon of Target Chip Ganassi Racing.テつ
Scott, welcome to the call.テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ Thank you.テつ Thanks for having me.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ Scott, just a couple questions before we open it up to the media.テつ What are your thoughts on the season so far?テつ You're third in points, but you are a little bit behind the Penske duo of Juan Pablo Montoya and Will Power.テつ You're usually strong in the second half.テつ Heading to Fontana do you think you are in position to contend for another series title?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ Yeah, you hope so.テつ I think with how the season's gone, the No. 9 Target car has been strong in just about every scenario.テつ We've had some pretty sore races I think with St. Pete, the mechanical issue there with the air jacks.テつ Then New Orleans was kind of the non-race there.テつ Toronto was a bit of a bummer I think with strategy and just how we ended up there.テつ I think we could have capitalized on a good points-ending day there.テつ
Still third in points, 40-odd something out of the lead.テつ Still in great contention for the championship.テつ
It's never easy.テつ It's tough.テつ I think the Penskes have been extremely strong this year, especially on the street course scenarios, qualifying on the ovals.テつ
But I think hopefully we can have a smooth run and gain some much-needed points on Juan and obviously Will.テつ But Helio is very close, as well.テつ The championship, as always, is going to come down to the wire.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ California has been good to you.テつ You won at Long Beach, won the 2014 race at Sonoma.テつ You could complete the California sweep this weekend at Fontana.テつ You've never visited Victory Lane at Fontana.テつ Would it be gratifying to win at a track where you've never won?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ Always.テつ You always want to win, no matter what track it is.テつ It's rewarding definitely the first time you maybe get to have a shot at winning.テつ
Fontana, we've had mixed results there.テつ Last year we were very dominant I think with both cars.テつ T.K. did a phenomenal job capturing the win late in the race, to take that.テつ
I think we've done well on ovals so far this year.テつ The car was very good at Indy, despite the overheating of the engine at the end of the race that cost us another shot at the 500.テつ And in Texas, both the 9 and the 10 were definitely the class of the field.テつ
We'll have to see how it goes for Fontana this weekend, but typically a track I think the team does quite well at.テつ Hopefully we can continue that trend.テつ
Obviously different conditions this year going from a night race to a day race.テつ It should hopefully be not too hot.テつ Looks like the temperatures are kind of mild for this time of year.テつ But I think degradation and trying to maintain pace over a stint is going to be the tough situation, especially with the track temp being higher during the day.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ You mentioned the temperatures and the forecast for Saturday.テつ It's going to be 500 miles in the heat of the day.テつ As a driver, do you do anything to prepare yourself for 500 miles and hot weather conditions?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ At this point your training regime should be in full swing.テつ Oval tracks, they're demanding, but more so mentally.テつ A lot of it depends on how easy the car is to drive or how good it is, how good it is over a long run.テつ That determines a lot of the workload for the driver.テつ
I expect this year to be quite tough.テつ There's a lot of unknowns going there with the new aero kit.テつ Every track we go to is a steep learning curve because of the that situation, not being able to go off of anything from last year with a day race and different scenarios we've had, with the addition of it being 500 miles.テつ
It will be draining and hopefully we're up for the task.テつ I think it's the typical stuff:テつ make sure you get some good sleep, eat well, keep hydrating yourself.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ You have 37 wins in your IndyCar career.テつ That puts you fifth on the all-time list.テつ You trail only A.J. Foyt, Mario Andretti, Michael Andretti and Al Unser.テつ Do you look at the record books and think about your place in the sport's history?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ I think it's been more prominent for myself just for the sheer fact that we have moved up in significant points in the past couple years.テつ So, yeah, you become more aware of it.テつ To be on that short list of Foyt, Andretti and Unser is pretty astonishing.テつ It feels great.テつ
You know, as I've always said, stats are something that I hope to look back on when I leave the sport, and hope to be happy with what we've achieved.テつ
As I've always said, too, all but one of those wins has been with Team Target.テつ If we do things right, we'll be able to move up on that list a few more spots.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ We'll open it up to questions for Scott Dixon.テつ

Q.テつ Scott, how much information do the teams gather from other ovals like Indy and Texas that can be applied to California?テつ Or is it the fact that you're coming to California with a new kit, it's a clean sheet of paper?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ Yeah, you know, you definitely learn things.テつ Anytime you're on track, you're going to be in learning situations.テつ Each track changes a little bit.テつ I think California, you have sidewalls and (indiscernible), whereas you don't have them at Texas or Indy as well.テつ There's a lot of different configurations that really manipulate what the car does.テつ
You got to give Chevy a lot of credit because they've mapped everything very well, but it's still trying to find out the ultimate speed that you need on a consistent level to be the fastest over a stint.テつ
The added tough part to that is Chevy have a lot of options, which is great, too, we have a lot of options, but you can mess it up.テつ
I think some things always (indiscernible), especially with setups and cross-weights and mechanical things.テつ But each track is very unique.テつ Each time you go back, the track is quite different.テつ The tire could be different.テつ It's always a lot of unknowns.テつ
But I think this year there's a lot more added unknowns going into the weekend than we've had previous years.テつ

Q.テつ What would you like to see the schedule balance shake out to be as far as ovals and street or road courses when you see that later this year?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ For me, I've always enjoyed the 50/50 split.テつ When I first came to America in Indy Lights, it was 12 races, six road and streets, six short tracks and superspeedways.テつ
I think a lot of people, just from what I hear from fans, they'd obviously like to add more ovals to the series.テつ It's a bit kind of one-sided right now with road and street.テつ
I think IndyCar is very unique.テつ There's no other racing class in the world that has so many disciplines, and disciplines you have to be real good at.テつ I think the perfect split is 50/50.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ The next win by the team will be the hundredth for Chip Ganassi Racing.テつ Do you put any pressure on yourself to try to get those landmark wins for Chip or the team?テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ You know, not really.テつ Of course it would be fantastic to get the hundredth IndyCar win.テつ But if you're doing your job right, that's going to come anyway.テつ
I think for us, the focus is every weekend, you know, getting the most out of the first practice, any practice, get the most out of qualifying, and try to win the race.テつ
Hopefully it comes this year from one of the four, which would be fantastic.テつ Hopefully it's more than that.テつ But, yeah, it's fantastic for Chip, obviously, what he's accomplished in a pretty short-term with a team like this, across many platforms.テつ
Yes, I would love to bring that hundredth.テつ But there's three other guys on the team that will be trying to do the same thing.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ Seeing as we have no additional questions, we will wrap-up the call and thank Scott for his time and wish you the best of luck this weekend at Fontana.テつ
SCOTT DIXON:テつ Awesome.テつ Appreciate it.テつ
THE MODERATOR:テつ That will wrap-up today's IndyCar media teleconference.テつ Thank you.テつ

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