Going Above And Beyond
One of the main comments that I read here and elsewhere is that fans don’t like Scott Dixon because they find him boring. Please excuse what will certainly come across as a sexist comment, but I’ll submit that anyone who can get, and keep, a wife like Emma Davies Dixon cannot possibly be boring.
I’m not quite sure what people want out of the guy. He’s not a loose cannon that flashes double-birds at race officials, but he is no milquetoast driver afraid of a camera and a microphone. Perhaps one reason I like him is that he is very even-keeled; a trait that I try to emulate myself – not only here, but in my day-to-day living.
One of the most legendary drivers in IndyCar history was Al Unser. If you think that Dixon is dull, you should have seen some of the post-race interviews that Big Al delivered. They were yawn-inducing. There are stories about how reporters would cringe when Unser won a race, because they knew they were about to be treated to the dullest interview possible.
But today, I’m not arguing the dullness of Scott Dixon. Dull is in the eye of the beholder. For every example I could offer up to prove that Dixon is not boring, someone would throw out one indicating his dullness.
But venture off of the track, and there is no argument as to what kind of person Scott Dixon is – or the entire Dixon family, for that matter.
Scott Dixon does not seek the spotlight. That seems to contradict someone who has just won his fourth IndyCar championship to go along with his Indianapolis 500 victory. Most people would associate those accomplishments with someone who liked to pound their chest in a “look at me” fashion.
But Dixon doesn’t really care if anyone looks at him. That’s why more than a month went by after Justin Wilson’s fatality, before any of us knew that Dixon stayed at Wilson’s bedside for practically twenty-four hours until Julia Wilson could travel to Pennsylvania. Curt Cavin relayed that story on Trackside the other night.
It wasn’t like Dixon had nothing to do that night. In just a few days, he would have to be across the country in Sonoma to prepare to win a championship. But knowing what I know about Dixon, it was probably about a two-second decision; whether to leave the hospital and go about his business or to stay. He stayed because it was the right thing to do.
Dixon didn’t send out tweets praising himself for this. He did it because someone had to do it and he was the one that did it – regardless of the pending championship. Had it not been for Curt Cavin relaying this bit of information to us, we never would have known. And that would probably suit Scott Dixon just fine.
Keep in mind, it was the Scott Dixon that moved his entire family to St. Petersburg right after the death of fellow driver and former teammate Dan Wheldon – just so he and Emma could be near Susie Wheldon, as she acclimated herself to a new life without her husband and her children’s father.
This is what is known as going above and beyond what is expected. Perhaps it’s that same mentality that has earned Dixon four championships and placed him among the elite drivers in the history of the sport – doing much more than is expected.
If Scott Dixon never wins another race, he’ll have my admiration forever. When he finally hangs up his helmet, I suspect that he’ll have a couple of more championships to his credit and at least one more Indianapolis 500 win. But when his career is over, do you know what the first thing I will think of when I hear the name Scott Dixon? It won’t be the championships, the “500” victories or the multiple race wins. It won’t be that some considered him boring. It’ll be that he stepped up when his friends needed him.
I don’t have the accolades that Scott Dixon does, nor the fame or the lifestyle. What’s more, I never will. But when I die, if someone can say about me what I just said about Dixon stepping up for his friends – I will have died a fulfilled man.
We should all be as boring as Scott Dixon.