Indy 500 champion Tony Kanaan and Pocono Indy 400 winner Scott Dixon have their eyes on a special prize next Saturday night (Oct. 19) in the MAVTV 500 at the Auto Club Speedway as part of the final leg of the Fuzzy’s Triple Crown.
Not only will the two 2013 Long Distance Race winners seek to capture the coveted 500-mile contest, the IZOD IndyCar Series season finale, but they will hope to collect the $250,000 bonus established by Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka.
Last December, Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka announced the renewal of a longtime tradition with Fuzzy’s Triple Crown and Fuzzy’s would award $1 million to a driver who could can win all three major long distance events in 2013, the Indianapolis 500, Pocono Indy 400 and the MAVTV 500 in Fontana. If a driver wins two of the three big races, Fuzzy’s will present a check for $250,000 to that driver.
Kanaan and Dixon will have the opportunity to win that Fuzzy’s quarter of a million dollar check when the green flag drops at 5:50 p.m. PDT Oct. 19 at the fast two-mile oval track east of Los Angeles.
The Fuzzy’s Triple Crown renewed a tradition of the popular “Triple Crown” from the 1970s and 1980s IndyCar competition, as the previous “Triple Crown” included 500-mile races at Indianapolis, Pocono and Ontario, Calif., from 1971- 1980 and from 1981-1989 at Indy, Pocono and Michigan.
Only one driver, Al Unser, has captured all three races in a single season, when the four-time Indy 500 winner drove to victory in the Jim Hall-owned First National City Travelers Checks-sponsored car at Indy, Pocono and Ontario in 1978.
Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka, created by Masters and U.S. Open golf champion Fuzzy Zoeller, has been a popular entry into the IZOD IndyCar Series as the Official Vodka of the IZOD IndyCar Series and the primary sponsor for Ed Carpenter Racing. Carpenter, who drives the No 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet-powered car, won the MAVTV 500 race last year at Fontana.
Kanaan, driving the No. 11 Hydroxycut Chevrolet for KV Racing Technology, won the biggest race of his career in May with his first Indianapolis 500-Mile Race title. Dixon, at the controls of Target Honda for Target Chip Ganassi Racing, is the current series point leader entering the MAVTV 500 and would like to add the Fuzzy’s money with a championship-winning check.
“I’m looking forward to this race for sure, not just because of the Fuzzy’s Triple Crown but also I have special memories from this place,” said Kanaan. “I won my Indy Lights championship here in 1997, and I actually won my IndyCar championship here (in 2004). I clinched the championship here, but we didn’t celebrate until we went to Texas. So this place has been quite good for me. I’m looking forward to that. It’s the last oval of the year and we’ve had quite a strong car on ovals this year. Adding the extra bonus from Fuzzy’s on the Triple Crown, it’s awesome.”
“Winning at Fontana would be huge for us,” said Dixon, the 2008 Indy 500 winner. “I have a lot of respect for Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka to bring such as great tradition back to IndyCar racing this year. Pocono was a bit of different circuit than the speed track at Indy and Fontana but it was great to win there. I know that No. 20 Fuzzy’s car with Ed (Carpenter) will be right there too. Unfortunately, I had a front row seat on his Fontana win last year. I’d like to have him watch me win it this time.”
Zoeller, an Indiana native, knows the prestige of winning a major event and wishes Kanaan and Dixon the best in their quest for the $250,000 Fuzzy’s Triple Crown prize on October 19.
“Tony and Scott have been outstanding this year by winning the Indy 500 and Pocono Indy 400,” said Zoeller, the 1979 Masters champion and 1984 U.S. Open winner. “They’re certainly contenders for the MAVTV 500 win and taking home $250,000 for a portion of the Fuzzy’s Triple Crown. They might be the clubhouse leaders going into Fontana, but I think my boy, Ed Carpenter, will have something to say about winning at Fontana too. Ed was in Fuzzy’s victory lane last year and he’ll be one of the spoilers for Tony and Scott in this year.”