Motor Sport Superstar John Andretti Will Drive Porsche Panamera Turbo Pace Car At The 2010 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
Colorado Springs, May 12---------A member of one America's most famous motor sports families will drive the official Pace Car on June 27 to open the 88th Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
Super star John Andretti will be the Grand Marshall and behind the wheel of a sizzling new Porsche Panamera Turbo at the start of the Race To The Clouds in Colorado Springs. The Pace Car is provided by Porsche of Colorado Springs for the nation's second-oldest motor sports event behind only the Indianapolis 500.
Andretti is perhaps the nation's most versatile driver, and has won in CART, NHRA, Top Fuel Dragsters, endurance racing and NASCAR stock car racing.
Though it's the first time that Andretti has been on hand for the legendary race, his famous uncle, Mario, won the title at the 1969 Pikes Peak Hill Climb when it was part of the USAC National Championship series.
"I'm really looking forward to being at Pikes Peak," said Andretti, "it's probably one of the top motor sports events where the rules have not eliminated ingenuity, and it's such a unique event, cars, people and an element of risk. It's going to be tough for me not to jump in somebody's car and head for the top."
Andretti will appear courtesy of Window World Cares and Window World Racing, which support St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Its goal is to raise $1.4 million as part of the "Pay For A Day" campaign to support the facility.
A driver since the age of nine, Andretti has been behind the wheel of almost everything with four wheels underneath it, a few with two wheels and a couple with treads and runners. Starting in sanctioned go-kart racing, Andretti has made is mark in all forms of auto racing including USAC midgets, IndyCars, NHRA Top Fuel dragsters and NASCAR.
Born to racer Aldo Andretti - twin to Indy car legend Mario Andretti, John Andretti had racing streaming through his blood. It doesn't stop at his bloodline however, as Andretti's Godfather happens to be another Indy car legend - A.J. Foyt. Despite the rich family history it was John who branched out, and today, has become one of the most versatile drivers on the Andretti racing family tree.
After his birth in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, Andretti was raised near Indianapolis, and growing up it became - and remained - his goal to win at the "Mecca" of auto racing - The Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Like his father and uncle before him, Andretti first joined the big leagues of racing in the Indy PPG/CART Series in 1987.
Last year, with Front Row Motorsports and Andretti behind the wheel, Front Row completed its most successful season to date and qualified for all the Sprint Cup races, finishing inside the precious top 35 guaranteed starting positions. Andretti did his usual moonlight appearance at the Indianapolis 500. Only this time Andretti did it with a friend and previous boss, "The King," Richard Petty, as a co-entrant and for the first time in his illustrious career, Petty was a participant in IndyCars.
The 2010 event should continue the excitement and heated competition that marked last summer's chase that attracted 163 racers in 17 classes who attacked the 12.42 mile course with 156 turns to the 14,110-foot summit.
To date, a total of 152 racers and drivers have registered for the 2010 event, including 16 returning champions from last summer's showdowns in all classes.
The popular Fan Fest, presented by Budweiser, which attracted almost 35,000 fans to downtown Colorado Springs to meet the drivers and racers, see their cars, trucks and motorcycles, and enjoy music, food and special events, is set for Friday, June 25, from 5:00-10:00 p.m.