The series of 12 Questions interviews continues this week with four-time IndyCar champion Scott Dixon, who came up short of his quest to win another title Sunday at Sonoma Raceway. Dixon, who drives for Chip Ganassi Racing, is fourth on the all-time IndyCar wins list with 41 victories.
1. How much of your success is based on natural ability and how much has come from working at it?
I think it’s always a compromise, but it’s a team sport, so it’s definitely across all platforms of the good people on the team — engineers, mechanics, strategists — so it’s never just one person. I think that’s the most important thing, is you gotta work together as much as you can. And for myself, yeah, some of it is natural ability, but I think to keep consistency and win championships and so on, it takes a lot of hard work.
2. What’s your pitch for people to become fans of yours?
I think across the board, the Verizon IndyCar series has so many different personalities. There’s so many people from different countries, different backgrounds, so everybody has someone they can kind of relate with, and I think that’s pretty cool. But I don’t know — because I’m a ginger, maybe?
3. What is the hardest part of your job away from the racetrack?
I think the separation sometimes from family life to racing life can be tough, but it’s also been really nice to have kids, because it helps you mentally kind of disconnect and helps you to not overthink things. So I think actually my outside family life is very important to how my racing career has progressed.
4. Let’s say a fan spots you eating dinner in a nice restaurant. Should they come over for an autograph or no?
Yeah, absolutely. Whatever they need. I’ll get their meal, too. (Smiles)
5. What’s a story in IndyCar that doesn’t get enough coverage?
Probably this Aussie guy, Will Power (who was walking by at the moment). He’s always moaning about being sore or a bad leg.
I don’t know. I think the racing is the best in the world. I think once people tune in, they’re hooked, and it is the diversity between the short tracks and the superspeedways, road courses, street courses — it’s just getting the person engaged, and once they’re engaged, they’re hooked.
6. Who is the last driver you texted?
Probably Tony Kanaan, my teammate.
You frequently text him?
Group messages, yeah, there’s quite a few. Yeah, that was probably him. He was probably the last, or Dario (Franchitti). He’s an ex-driver, but we text a lot.
7. Do you consider race car drivers to be entertainers?
Some of them for sure are very big entertainers. Helio (Castroneves). (James) Hinchcliffe did pretty well on Dancing with the Stars, so sure.
8. What is your middle finger policy on the racetrack?
On the racetrack? Use it at will.
What happens if you get it done to you?
I’ll probably do something back, probably the same thing. Maybe two of them.
9. Some drivers keep a payback list in their minds. Do you also have a list for drivers who have done you a favor on the track?
No, only a list for bad things. (Smiles) You know, I don’t keep any kind of lists. Depending on what it is, you have memories of what stands out, but I think you should be nice to people.
10. Who is the most famous person you’ve had dinner with?
Probably Marco Andretti. (Grins)
11. What’s something about yourself you’d like to improve?
I should probably stop biting my nails.
Is it a long time habit?
My wife hates it.
12. The last interview I did was with Chris Buescher. His question is: What makes you crazy enough to strap into one of those things?
I don’t know. It’s just natural, man. He needs to try it out, then he’ll understand.
He said he can’t do it.
Yeah he can! Come on.
The next interview I’m doing is with Jimmie Johnson. Do you have a question that I can ask Jimmie?
What kind of underwear does he wear? It is briefs, boxers or tighty whities?
This interview was brought to you by Dover International Speedway. The cutoff race for the first playoff round takes place NEXT WEEKEND(!!!) at Dover. Here’s a link to buy tickets (and make sure to come say hi at the tweetup).