Scott Dixon and championship winning team may switch numbers next season

IMS

As the 2013 IndyCar Series Champ, Scott Dixon has to decide if he wants to run the No. 1 next season.

As the pilot of the defending IndyCar Series championship winning team, Scott Dixon reserves the right to drive the No. 1-branded entry next season.

But if the decision were left up to him, Dixon says he would likely pass.

Dixon is coming off his third IndyCar championship, having now accomplished the feat in 2003, 2008 and 2013. He changed his car number from "9" to "1" in the spirit of open-wheel tradition in 2004 but endured a frustrating campaign in which he went winless and finished 10th in the final standings.

So when Dixon won his second championship in 2008, he passed on the chance to again run the No. 1 and maintained his No. 9 the following season. That is a trend he would prefer to maintain next season as well.

"That was a dreadful year when I ran the No. 1 and Chip likes to do it on different occasions, but our recent history with Dario (Franchitti) they didn't do it," Dixon told IndyCar.com. "Our recent history with the No. 9 is solid and I would prefer to stick with it. But if the decision is to use the No. 1, I'll be okay with it."

Franchitti won three consecutive championships for Ganassi from 2009-11 but chose the keep the traditional No. 10 branding after each championship. Ganassi hasn't run a No. 1 car since that ill-fated 2004 season and seems to be open to bringing it back for Dixon.

"I'm going to talk about that with our people and our sponsors and see what they all think," Ganassi said. "Personally, I might like to -- it has such a great history."

Ryan Hunter-Reay won the IndyCar championship in 2012 and his Andretti Autosport team decided to revive the tradition for 2013, transforming the No. 28 into the No. 1. It was the first time the act had been observed in Indy car racing since Sebastien Bourdais' 2007 Champ Car entry reflected the honor.

Hunter-Reay's car will return to a No. 28 branding next season.

Should Ganassi and Dixon switch to No. 1 next season or just stick with the No. 9? Tell us in the comments section below.

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