An idiots guide to the MAVTV 500*

The low down on the IndyCar season finale by writer Lisa Davidson

  • With no disrespect to anyone intended

So, you find yourself curious about what this race on Saturday night is about. Maybe you have a friend who wants you to watch it with them or maybe the desire to learn about IndyCar racing has become so intense that you simply have to watch it. Right. Well, regardless of how much you know about car racing, this little guide may be useful in learning a bit more. So here goes!

What is the MAVTV 500?

Auto Club Speedway is a 2 mile long track located in Fontana, CA. MAVTV is an independently owned cable network. In order to make people more aware of them, MAVTV has paid to be the “naming sponsor” of this IndyCar race. The race is scheduled to be 250 laps, or 500 miles in length. So, it’s called the “MAVTV 500”.

Who will win?

The MAVTV 500 features 18 out of 25 drivers who have already won IndyCar races. That’s over 70%. Compare that to Sprint Cup. I didn’t, but I don’t think their field has nearly so high a percentage of winning drivers. So, you could pick just about anyone to end up the winner of this race. Because, with the right combination of pit stops, tire strategy, lap speeds, and good old luck, just about any of the 25 drivers could win this race. I’m guessing Allmendinger, but my pre-race guesses are nearly always wrong, so maybe go with someone else.

What about the IndyCar Championship?

Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet

Photo by: Covy Moore

Since this is the last race of the 2013 IndyCar season, the championship will be decided by this race. Drivers can earn points in IndyCar by competing in races (winning of course means more points), leading laps of the race, and going fastest during the qualifying, which is called “winning the pole”. Please note that no actual pole is harmed or even used when “winning the pole”.

There are two drivers who can win the Championship. The leader at the start of the race is Scott Dixon, a driver from New Zealand who has red hair, drives a red car with a #9 on it, and wears a red driving suit. He is sponsored by Target. He is a great race car driver and seems likely to be the series champion. If someone asks you who you think will win the championship, you can be cool if you say, and “I have to go with Dixie”. All drivers have rather silly nicknames, and Dixon’s is “Dixie”. It will make it seem as if you know more than you do.

If you are a “Dancing with The Stars” fan, the only other possible but less likely winner would be 5th season DWTS champion Helio Castroneves. He goes into the championship race 25 points behind Dixon. Helio is the only other possible champion for 2014.

What about engine manufacturers?

Two big names in the automotive world, Honda and Chevrolet, are competing in this series for the manufacturers’ championship. They are tied going into this final race. It’s hard to figure out who will win. So, if you are asked about this, it’s okay to shrug and look puzzled and say, “I dunno”. That’s what I plan to do.

After reading this, I hope you will kick back and enjoy the race, secure in the knowledge that my readers are not Complete Idiots, at least not about this race.

Lisa Davidson

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Scott Dixon
Teams Team Penske
Article type Preview
Tags champion, finale, fontana, helio castroneves, indycar, scott dixon