IRL: Texas II: Season finale preview

Indycar Series Championship to be settled at Chevy 500 INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Oct. 6, 2003 -- One of the best championship battles in the history of motorsports has an incredible list of scenarios that will determine which driver will take home...

Indycar Series Championship to be settled at Chevy 500

INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Oct. 6, 2003 -- One of the best championship battles in the history of motorsports has an incredible list of scenarios that will determine which driver will take home $1 million and the coveted 2003 IRL IndyCar Series Championship Cup.

The IRL IndyCar Series Champion will be honored at the Championship Celebration Oct. 25 at EPCOT at Walt Disney World Resorts.

With one race remaining, the Chevy 500 Oct. 12 at Texas Motor Speedway, five drivers are eligible for the IndyCar Series Championship. The standings are the closest they have ever been heading into the final race of the season, with two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves and Target Chip Ganassi Racing driver Scott Dixon tied for the lead with 467 points. Andretti Green Racing driver Tony Kanaan is third with 460, followed by two-time IndyCar Series Champion Sam Hornish Jr. at 448 and 2003 Indianapolis 500 winner Gil de Ferran at 437.

Some drivers control their own destiny, while others need some help in order to win the IndyCar Series Championship. For a complete 2003 IRL IndyCar Series Championship scenarios sheet and points possibility chart, log on to www.indycarseries.com.

IndyCar Series Points System:

Per race, for both driver and entrant championships. 50 points - 1st, 40 - 2nd, 35 - 3rd, 32 - 4th, 30 - 5th, 28 - 6th, 26 - 7th, 24 - 8th, 22 - 9th, 20 - 10th, 19 - 11th, 18 - 12th, 17 - 13th, 16 - 14th, 15 - 15th, 14 - 16th, 13 - 17th, 12- 18th, 11 - 19th, 10 - 20th, 9 - 21st, 8 - 22nd, 7 - 23rd, 6 - 24th, 5 - 25th, 4 - 26th, 3 - 27th, 2 - 28th, 1 - 29th thru 33rd.

Two bonus points are awarded for the most laps led.

HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota/ Firestone, Tied for first, 467 points): Castroneves controls his own destiny in the points chase. If he wins the Chevy 500, he wins the championship. He can finish as low as 21st and still win, depending on where the other four drivers finish.

SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Panoz G Force/ Toyota/Firestone, Tied for first, 467 points): Dixon also controls his own destiny in the points chase. If he wins the Chevy 500, he wins the championship. He can finish as low as 21st and still win, depending on where the other four drivers finish.

TONY KANAAN (No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone, Third place, 460 points): Kanaan, like Castroneves and Dixon, controls his own destiny. If he wins the Chevy 500, he wins the championship. Kanaan can finish 14th and still win, depending on where the other four drivers finish.

SAM HORNISH JR. (No. 4 Pennzoil Panther Dallara/Chevrolet/ Firestone, Fourth place, 448 points): Hornish doesn't have to the win the Chevy 500, a race he has won the past two years, in order to have a chance at his third consecutive championship, but it would help. Even if Hornish wins the race and leads the most laps, earning the two bonus points to claim 52 total points, he still needs Castroneves and Dixon to finish no better than fourth in order to win the championship. Should that happen, even if Kanaan finished second, Hornish would win the championship.

If Hornish wins and does not earn the two bonus points for leading the most laps, Castroneves, Dixon and Kanaan must finish outside of the top three. Hornish can finish in seventh and lead the most laps and still win, depending on where the other four drivers finish.

GIL DE FERRAN (No. 6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota/ Firestone, Fifth-place, 437 points): De Ferran needs to win the Chevy 500 and needs a lot of help in order to win the IndyCar Series Championship in his final season. If he wins the race, he needs Castroneves and Dixon to finish no better than 10th, Kanaan to finish no better than seventh and Hornish to finish no better than third. De Ferran can mathematically win if he finishes second, but should he finish third or worse, he will not win the championship.

Tickets, TV and Radio: The season-ending Chevy 500 at Texas Motor Speedway is Oct. 12 and will be broadcast live at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) by ESPN and the IMS Radio Network. For tickets, log on to www.texasmotorspeedway, call (817) 215-8500 or go to any Ticketmaster location.

-irl-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Gil de Ferran , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Chip Ganassi , Sam Hornis
Teams Team Penske , Chip Ganassi Racing