Marco Andretti switches to part-time in IndyCar, considers IMSA

Marco Andretti has announced he will no longer be a full-time IndyCar driver, but is targeting Indy 500 glory and other marquee races in other branches of the sport.

Marco Andretti switches to part-time in IndyCar, considers IMSA

The third-gen driver has scored two wins since making his IndyCar debut in 2006, and as recently as last August took pole for the Indianapolis 500.

However, he has notably struggled with the current car on road and street courses admitting his late-braking technique requires a ‘solid’ rear end – something that disappeared with the arrival of the IR-18 in 2018.

“Upon some careful thought over the past couple of months, I have made the decision to make some changes to my racing activities and focus for 2021,” he wrote on social media. “I recently shared this decision and the changes that I want to make with my Dad [Michael Andretti, Andretti Autosport team owner] and have spoken at length with him about it. I appreciate his openness and for allowing me the flexibility to map out my own course going forward.

“I am fortunate to be in a position at Andretti Autosport to run the full IndyCar season if I want to. But instead, I have decided to change up my direction somewhat – to reset – to do something a little different – look at everything fresh and see where that takes me. And, to me, now seems like the appropriate time to do that.

“I definitely am going to keep driving. I still have a deep passion for it and have unfinished business to take care of and some boxes that I want to check before I consider retiring as a driver.

“First and foremost, I remain very hungry to win the Indy 500. It is our biggest stage and the place that I feel I bring the most to the table as a driver. I’ve come close there and am in the mix there it seems each year. Winning the pole there last year was awesome but that isn’t enough – I know that a victory there is in my future so we’ll try to get that done in the coming years.

“As such I have committed to and am looking forward to running the Indy 500 with Andretti Autosport this year, In addition to being squarely focused on the Indy 500, I might also take a look at perhaps running some other races on the IndyCar schedule down the road as the season progresses, in order to remain “car fit”. I have also offered to help the team with some testing and other activities along the way.

“I will also consider other options among the IndyCar paddock as well as different opportunities in all of motorsports.

“My involvement in my Andretti Autosport entry will continue. [Marco part-owns his #98 entry with Michael Andretti and Bryan Herta].

“I also want to do some sportscar racing – maybe even get the chance to do some IMSA racing with my cousin Jarett which would be a lot of fun for me. I’ll be looking into other sportscar opportunities as well in the coming months, and would welcome discussions in that regard. Marquee events like the 24 Hours of Daytona, 12 Hours of Sebring and Le Mans would be on that list.

“I am excited for what the future holds in store for me both on and off the track and, again, am grateful to Dad and Andretti Autosport for allowing me the freedom to change things around as I’d like and to proceed forward a little differently this upcoming season.”

According to TracksideOnline's database, Andretti has 248 career starts, which ranks him 16th all-time. The 33-year-old has amassed a pair of wins, six poles, 20 podiums, 42 top-five finishes, and has led 1032 laps (39th on the all-time list).

shares
comments

Related video

Hunter-Reay confirmed for 12th season at Andretti Autosport

Previous article

Hunter-Reay confirmed for 12th season at Andretti Autosport

Next article

Michael Andretti “supports and respects” Marco’s career decision

Michael Andretti “supports and respects” Marco’s career decision
Load comments
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
Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious? Prime

Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious?

A quarter of the drivers racing in the 105th edition of the Indianapolis 500 are former winners - but are they the favourites? The veteran drivers largely impressed in qualifying - but there's also a plethora of young guns looking to secure victory at IndyCar's flagship race...

IndyCar
May 25, 2021
What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1? Prime

What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1?

The FIA says it wants American drivers in Formula 1, but would it take an IndyCar driver to transfer or does an American need to join the European junior ladder system to get there? By David Malsher-Lopez.

Formula 1
May 19, 2021
Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life Prime

Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life

After spending the majority of his 179-race Formula 1 career in middling to tail-end machinery, Romain Grosjean finds himself once again with an underdog team in IndyCar. While not without its challenges, he's relishing the more level playing field that means his Dale Coyne Racing crew can expect to claim a few scalps...

IndyCar
May 14, 2021