With the countdown to the 2020 NTT IndyCar Series season in high gear, INDYCAR is highlighting the events on next year's calendar. Featured here: The Honda Indy 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, which begins public sale of tickets Tuesday:
HONDA INDY 200
Track Information: 13-turn, 2.258-mile permanent road course at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.
Race Dates: Aug. 14-16, 2020.
Tickets on Sale: Public tickets on sale starting Tuesday. Go to midohio.com/tickets for details.
History: 35 races dating to July 13, 1980.
Why You Should Go: Central Midwest location with some of the best camping opportunities on the NTT IndyCar Series schedule. Plentiful hillside viewing opportunities.
The King of Mid-Ohio: It’s easy to anoint Bobby Rahal, who considered this his home track, or his son, Graham, who was born 50 miles to the south in New Albany, Ohio, as the king of this iconic permanent road course. But the driver to beat there in recent years has been Scott Dixon, who has won six races in Chip Ganassi Racing cars. Keep in mind Dixon has won those six races in only 13 starts since Indy car racing returned to Mid-Ohio following a four-year break. Two of Dixon's wins came from the pole, and he won the 2014 race from the last starting position (22nd). In that race he led 45 of the 90 laps.
Repeating the Feat: Yes, Dixon will be the favorite to win next year’s race and not simply because he usually finishes well there. Mid-Ohio has a strong history of drivers winning consecutive races, including Bobby Rahal (1985-86), Michael Andretti (1990-91), Emerson Fittipaldi (1992-93), Al Unser Jr. (1994-95), Alex Zanardi (1996-97), Helio Castroneves (2000-01) and Dixon (2011-12). Dixon even had a stretch of five wins in eight years (2007-14). Chip Ganassi Racing has won 11 races.
Close Finishes: Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Scott Dixon and then-rookie Felix Rosenqvist produced the closest 1-2 finish in event history earlier this year when they were separated at the finish by a mere 0.0934 seconds. Previously, the event record for close finishes was 0.247 seconds (Adrian Fernandez over Scott Pruett in 1998).
Few Flags: Two of the past three Mid-Ohio races have been caution-free, and that’s happened four times since 2012.
Race on the Move: Because of NBC’s coverage of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, next year’s Mid-Ohio race will be held a few weeks later in the calendar. Race day (Aug. 16) will be the event’s latest since 1993 when the races were held in September.
How it Happened: Watch a recap of Scott Dixon's latest Mid-Ohio victory in this edition of Fast Forward.
PAST MID-OHIO WINNERS:
1980 (CART): Johnny Rutherford
1983 (CART): Teo Fabi
1984 (CART): Mario Andretti
1985 (CART): Bobby Rahal
1986 (CART): Bobby Rahal
1987 (CART): Roberto Guerrero
1988 (CART): Emerson Fittipaldi
1989 (CART): Teo Fabi
1990 (CART): Michael Andretti
1991 (CART): Michael Andretti
1992 (CART): Emerson Fittipaldi
1993 (CART): Emerson Fittipaldi
1994 (CART): Al Unser Jr.
1995 (CART): Al Unser Jr.
1996 (CART): Alex Zanardi
1997 (CART): Alex Zanardi
1998 (CART): Adrian Fernandez
1999 (CART): Juan Pablo Montoya
2000 (CART): Helio Castroneves
2001 (CART): Helio Castroneves
2002 (CART): Patrick Carpentier
2003 (CART): Paul Tracy
2007 (IRL): Scott Dixon
2008 (IRL): Ryan Briscoe
2009 (IRL): Scott Dixon
2010 (IRL): Dario Franchitti
2011 (INDYCAR): Scott Dixon
2012 (INDYCAR): Scott Dixon
2013 (INDYCAR): Charlie Kimball
2014 (INDYCAR): Scott Dixon
2015 (INDYCAR): Graham Rahal
2016 (INDYCAR): Simon Pagenaud
2017 (INDYCAR): Josef Newgarden
2018 (INDYCAR): Alexander Rossi
2019 (INDYCAR): Scott Dixon