Franchitti collects million dollar title bonus

2010 IZOD IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti celebrates poolside in Miami

2010 IZOD IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti celebrates poolside in Miami

A day after winning his third IZOD IndyCar  Series championship in four years, Dario Franchitti collected a cool US$1million bonus at the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series championship banquet in Miami.

Franchitti and Firestone Indy Lights champion J.K. Vernay were recognised during the Indy Racing League Championship Celebration poolside at the W Hotel on South Beach.

“I’m just going to enjoy it,” said Franchitt, who will join Will Power, Scott Dixon, Helio Castroneves, Ryan Briscoe and Alex Tagliani at the Armor All Gold Coast 600 later this month.

“I think I’m just going to let it sink in, enjoy it. I’m very proud of the achievement. And it’s an absolute honor to get to drive for the Target team. That feeling of success is great.”

Australian Will Power won the US$25,000 Raybestos Road & Street Challenge for having the best average finish on road and street courses.

Will Power manages a smile with fiancee Elizabeth Cannon at the championship celebration

Will Power manages a smile with fiancee Elizabeth Cannon at the championship celebration

Vernay was the dominant driver in the Firestone Indy Lights championship this season, thanking his team for the season’s effort.

“I’m just proud about the work that we did together at Sam Schmidt Motorsport,” said Vernay.

“It was a good year, especially for being a rookie in America. Now we have to be focused on next year to go to the IZOD IndyCar Series, to find a good deal. I will be the happiest guy in the world if I go there.”

Canadian James Hinchcliffe won the prestigious Greg Moore Legacy Award, the trophy formerly awarded in the CART/Champ Car World Series and now awarded in Firestone Indy Lights.

Championship driver: Dario Franchitti
Herff Jones Championship Driver Award: Dario Franchitti
Ritmo Mundo Championship Driver Award: Dario Franchitti
Championship team: Target Chip Ganassi Racing
Championship team sponsor: Target
Championship team managers: Scott Harner and Barry Wanser
Chief Mechanic of the Year Award: Kevin O’Donnell
Rookie of the Year Award: Alex Lloyd
Second place championship driver: Will Power
Second place championship team: Verizon Team Penske
Third place championship driver: Scott Dixon
Third place championship team: Target Chip Ganassi Racing
Tony Renna Rising Star Award: Simona de Silvestro
Bosch Platinum Award: Dario Franchitti
Raybestos Road & Street Course Challenge: Will Power
Xtrac Championship Award: Dan Wheldon

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