The Armor-All Gold Coast 600 V8 Supercar event is quickly becoming a huge favorite among Indy Car drivers and Marco Andretti is no exception to the allure of the Australian Gold Coast.
Now taking another step down the paths followed by his famed family, Marco will get a chance to join his cousin John and father Michael as Andrettis to climb to the Surfers podium, as he joins Jack Daniel’s Racing and driver Todd Kelly for the 2012 running of the October 19-21 all-star event.
After playing second fiddle to the CART and Champ Car races in Surfers Paradise for years, the V8 Supercars augmented the event last year by inviting top drivers from around the world to compete alongside the series regulars – giving some of the younger Indy Car drivers the chance to race on the famed Surfers street course that hosted the best open-wheel pilots in the world for nearly 20 years.
“The event has become very popular among the IndyCar drivers and I am pumped about the chance to compete this year,” Andretti said. “I appreciate Jack Daniel’s Racing providing me with this opportunity. Like anything, I want to be competitive. I expect to run in the top-10 and it should be fun. Hopefully Todd and the Jack Daniel’s Racing boys can help me get straight up to speed.”
The event will be the first actual race that Marco has competed in on the challenging Surfers street course. His move to the Indy Racing League at the start of his career kept him from racing at the Champ Car-sanctioned event, although he did get to run an exhibition race there with the reunified Indy Car Series in 2008.
Andretti will run alongside a proven winner in his quest to get to Victory Lane as he joins former Bathurst 1000 champion Kelly for the event. A former open-wheel driver that competed against Indy Car star Scott Dixon in his early career, Kelly knows that his new teammate will be up to the challenge that Surfers provides.
“Marco certainly knows his way around this track from his IndyCar races, and although the V8 Supercars are different to what he’s used to, I am sure he will find they are just as exciting to drive around here,” Kelly said. “It will be great to have the Andretti name back here.”