Marco Andretti’s Indy 500 livery pays tribute to Mario

Marco Andretti is to run a special livery at this year’s Indianapolis 500, honoring the 50th anniversary of his family’s only triumph as a driver in the Memorial Day Weekend classic.

Marco Andretti’s Indy 500 livery pays tribute to Mario

Despite several brilliant drives at Indianapolis Motor Speedway between 1965 and his retirement in 1994, Mario landed only one win there, in May 1969. Despite a slipping clutch, an overheating engine and a sticking wheel nut obliging him to run the race on only one set of Firestones, Andretti led 116 of the 200 laps to triumph in Andy Granatelli’s STP-sponsored Clint Brawner-designed Hawk III-Ford.

Although his son Michael scored 42 Indy car wins and led more laps at the Brickyard than even four-time winner Rick Mears, he never drove into Victory Lane – although his team Andretti Autosport has scored five wins there.

Marco Andretti, too, has suffered many misfortunes at the Speedway, which is why his rookie performance in 2006, finishing just 0.0635sec behind Sam Hornish Jr., remains his best result there.

Today the 32-year-old unveiled the retro paint scheme that the #98 U.S. Concrete / Curb Andretti-Herta Autosport-Honda will carry in next month’s 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500, its day-glow red resembling the STP colors on his grandfather’s ’69 race-winner.

“I’m really happy we were able to pull this off,” said Marco who co-owns his car along with father Michael and Bryan Herta. “The color will be hard to miss on track and the car looks great. We’re all very thankful that U.S. Concrete was on board to run the livery and make this year’s car as special as possible. We can’t wait to have a shot at bringing this car to victory lane on May 26.”

The paint scheme emulates Mario’s ’69 livery in the details, too. There’s a black block carrying the car number, a historical Firestone logo and, near the front suspension, the initials “FB”. These represent Frank Boeninghaus, engine supplier for the Hawk.

U.S. Concrete’s chairman CEO, Bill Sandbrook commented: “Marco Andretti is not only a great ambassador for IndyCar racing but for our safety and hiring initiatives as well. His excitement to honor his grandfather continues to show how dedicated he is to honoring his family’s legacy.

“We knew that partnering with the Andretti Autosport team was the best vehicle for us to successfully deliver our sponsorship objectives and this tribute is a shining example of what the entire Andretti family means to auto racing.”

“I was full of pride when I learned that my son Michael was paying tribute to me this way,” said Mario. “The effort his team is going through to present this commemorative car is flattering.  Thank you to the team for that effort and also for acknowledging my part in Indy 500 history.

“I am honored to have Marco carry the design from my 1969 car. I hope this winning paint scheme will be a good omen for him and that he’ll get his first 500 victory. When I see the car, it will definitely be an opportunity for reflection. It’s humbling. It is a tremendous compliment to me that this team would look back at my victory and find it worthy of recognition.”

Mario Andretti, Hawk, 1969 Indy 500 winner.

Mario Andretti, Hawk, 1969 Indy 500 winner.

Photo by: IndyCar Series

shares
comments
28 drivers confirmed for IndyCar test at IMS

Previous article

28 drivers confirmed for IndyCar test at IMS

Next article

Ganassi on IndyCar, guaranteed Indy slots, sportscars, and more

Ganassi on IndyCar, guaranteed Indy slots, sportscars, and more
Load comments
IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021
IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet Prime

IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet

The ace 20-somethings in IndyCar have risen to become title contenders, but the best of the series veterans are digging deep and responding – and will continue to do so over the next couple of years, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Aug 20, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie Prime

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in CART Indy car for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular teammate Mauro Martini's passion for racing.

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review Prime

The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review

At the halfway point in the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels? David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Prime

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all for us. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, Helio explained his tactics to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021
How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status Prime

How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status

Helio Castroneves joined AJ Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears with the most Indianapolis 500 wins after sweeping around the outside of Alex Palou on the penultimate lap in a thrilling climax. In one race, he validated Michael Shank's and Jim Meyer's faith in him, and Helio himself discovered there's life after Penske after all.

IndyCar
Jun 1, 2021