By Konnie McCollum
Distance: 200 laps, 300 miles (1.5-mile tri-oval)
Race: 8:45 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 1. Gates open at
TV: Live broadcast
Admission: $40-70 Saturday; $20 on Friday.
IndyCar Series Record at Kentucky: Sam Hornish Jr., 181.287 mph set 8-17-03.
IndyCar Series Qualifying Record at Kentucky: Sarah Fisher, 221.390 mph set 8-10-02.
Also at the Speedway:
IndyCar Series practice
5-11 p.m. Friday, July 31.
The band Carolina Liar performs at 6:15-7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Firestone Indy Lights Series race at 5 p.m. Saturday.
(August 2009) IndyCar Series driver Scott Dixon wears a big red target on his back for his Target Chip Ganassi racing team. But the two-time Indy Racing League champion knows he is also the target for all other drivers when his No. 9 open-wheel car pulls onto the track.
Dixon, the 2008 winner of the IndyCar Series race at Kentucky Speedway, will return to Kentucky to defend his title Aug. 1 for the 8:30 p.m. Meijer Indy 300 Presented by Red Baron and Edys. Dixon finished second three times at Kentucky in 2003, 2006 and 2007.
In 2008, with his win at Kentucky, Dixon tied the record for six wins in a season, which included a victory in the Indianapolis 500. He won the Indy Racing League Championship for the season.
In late July, Dixon was two points behind series leader Dario Franchitti. However, his win in June at Richmond International Raceway was his 19th series victory and it tied him with Sam Hornish Jr. for the all-time most successful driver in the IRL. He also won in April at Kansas Speedways Road Runner Turbo Indy 300 and in May at Milwaukees ABC Supply-AJ Foyt 225.
Born in Australia but a citizen of New Zealand, Dixon, 29, comes from a family of dirt track racers. He began racing karts at age 13 when he won the New Zealand Formula Vee championship after being granted a special license to compete.
After a successful racing career in Australia and New Zealand, including a championship in the class I Formula Ford Series and a Rookie of the Year award in the Australian Formula Holden Championship, Dixon moved on to the Dayton Indy Lights Series in North America in 200.
While at PacWest Racing, he enjoyed six wins, seven podium finishes and one pole position. At the time, he was the second-youngest driver in history to win the Indy Lights title.
During the next few years, Dixon, who in his off time likes to train for triathlons, became the youngest driver ever to win a CART Series race. He then won Rookie of the Year when he moved up to the Champ Car series.
In 2002, he began driving for Target Chip Ganassi Racing, where he earned 12 top-10 finishes.
Photo courtesy of IRL
Scott Dixon drives the Target
Chip Ganassi car in the IRL.
Dixons 2003 introduction to the Indy Racing League began with his victory at the season-opener in Homestead, Fla. He became just the third driver in series history to win his first IndyCar Series debut. He went on to win victories at Pikes Peak and Richmond, and earned the 2003 IndyCar Series Championship for Target Chip Ganassi Racing.
In 2007, he became the third IndyCar Series driver to win three consecutive races at one track when he won at Watkins Glen. He recorded a series best that season with 13 top-five and 16 top-10 finishes, which included finishing first or second in 10 of the 17 races. He finished second in points standing for the season.
When he is not at the track, Dixon, who now lives in Indianapolis with his wife, Emma, enjoys tinkering with gadgets and buying the latest cell phone and watches.