IndyCar legend denies shock switch rumors

Six-time IndyCar Series winner Scott Dixon has shrugged off rumors he’s had talks to switch teams.

Dixon and his Spanish team-mate Alex Palou are thought to be contracted to Chip Ganassi Racing through to 2023 while Jimmie Johnson and Marcus Ericsson are off-contract at the end of this season.

However, rumors recently emerged linking the New Zealander to an offer to join rival squad McLaren SP.

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The theory floated was that Dixon would have full control over his driving future in the series, rather than being at the mercy of his contract, and move into a leadership role once retired.

The rumors come at a time when McLaren SP gets set to expand from two full-time entries to three.

The team has three drivers in its cache, those being Pato O’Ward, the recently signed Alexander Rossi, and Felix Rosenqvist.

The latter has some uncertainty attached to him with no decision made as to whether Rosenqvist will remain in the IndyCar Series or switch to the sister Formula E squad.

That in itself fanned flames that Dixon might be on the move.

“Lots of potential, I think… you threw ‘potential’ in there a load of times,” Dixon said when prodded about the rumors of a potential switch.

“I haven’t been a part of any of these conversations, so not really sure where a lot of these things come from.

“Obviously people talk. I even got a few messages from people asking about the same thing.

“If people are having those conversations I haven’t been apart of them.

“For me, I love doing what I’m doing, I love being a part of the team that I’m with, and who knows what comes in the future, but as of right now (I’m) just focusing on this season.

“Yeah, that’s all I’ve got to say really. There’s nothing to it.”

Dixon is one of the elder statesmen of the category at 41 years old, though he isn’t the oldest full-time driver on the grid.

That title belongs to four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves, who at 47 years old shows no sign of slowing down.

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Jimmie Johnson is the second eldest full-timer at 46, while part-timers Juan Pablo Montoya and Tony Kanaan are 46 and 47 respectively.

For Dixon, age is only a number, and he’s got no intention to stop racing in the near future, nor end his relationship with the team he’s raced for since 2002.

“It’s hard to really comment,” Dixon said when asked if he had long-term team leadership ambitions.

“I think for me, I don’t see giving up anytime soon. I feel like in motorsport it’s hard to make a decision from one year to the next, as opposed to kind of looking five years down the road or more.

“For me, right now, it’s just enjoying IndyCar, trying to win races, trying to get back to where we need to, so that’s where the focus is.

“You know, the possibilities after I’m done, trust me, I’d love to still be a part of the sport. What that means and in what capacity, I have really no idea.

“But I love the sport. It’s been my passion since I was five or six years old, so it’s definitely something I want to be a part of for many more years.

“As of right now, it’s not on the radar.”

This weekend, the IndyCar Series heads to one of Chip Ganassi Racing’s happy hunting grounds.

The team has won eight of the 17 races at Mid-Ohio since 2007, six of those wins courtesy of Dixon.

The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio gets underway on Monday at 2.45am (AEST).

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