Chevy riding high with manufacturer’s championship

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FONTANA, CALIF. (AP) - Chevrolet has had its way with the competition since returning to IndyCar, and closed out its second year back in the series with a second consecutive manufacturer championship.

Although the driver championship went to Honda driver Scott Dixon of Target Chip Ganassi Racing, it was the bowtie brand that collected the rest of the hardware.

Will Power won Saturday night’s season finale at Auto Club Speedway to give Chevrolet its 10th win on the season, one more than Honda, and wrap up the manufacturer title. Chevy also celebrated an Indianapolis 500 victory this season, making the decision to return to IndyCar following a six-year absence from competition.

“Racing in IndyCar has been absolutely incredible,” said Jim Campbell, U.S. Vice President Performance Vehicles and Motorsports.

Chevrolet returned to IndyCar in 2012, the first year of engine competition following Honda’s exclusive powering of the series from 2005 through 2011. But Lotus came in with Chevy in a disastrous effort that saw several of its teams scrambling to get better engines. Chevy and Honda were forced to pick up the slack, and Lotus pulled out of IndyCar after one embarrassing season.

Now Chevy and Honda are forced by contract to support 60 percent of the field each _ a number that is reduced to 40 percent should a third manufacturer enter the series.

As much as Chevrolet loves its IndyCar participation, Campbell cautioned that competition is required.

“We do not like to run in spec series. We’re not interested in it. We like to race against somebody because it’s meaningful, it creates innovation, it pushes you to be better every week, every race, every year,” Campbell said. “We love racing against competition. We do it here and every series we’re in. If we get to a series where there’s no competition, we’re probably looking for the exit ramp. We have to race against competition.

“We have a few neighbors in our City of Detroit, surrounding area, that we would like to have them considered, but any manufacturer around the world, we’d love to see them come in.”

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