Class of 2000
Mario Andretti was born in Montona, Italy in 1940, then came to the United State at the age of 15. He, along with his twin brother Aldo, worked in their uncle’s garage, and began racing modifieds in 1959. Mario won 20 times in his first two seasons.
Andretti raced his first Indy Car in 1964. The next year, he was Rookie of the Year at the Indy 500, won his first Indy Car race, and captured his first Indy Car championship. He would win the title again in 1966, 1969 and 1984.
In the late 1960’s, he successfully raced Indy Cars, Formula One and Formula 5000, winning in each. From 1975 thru 1981, Andretti competed in F- 1, winning 16 races and 12 poles. His signature season was 1978 when he won six times en route to the title.
Returning to Indy Cars, he raced them until 1994, with his last win coming at Phoenix in 1993. He is second in all-time wins with 52, and he ranks first in both poles (67) and laps led (7587).
While open wheel cars were his first love, Andretti also enjoyed driving virtually anything, and he posted 109 career wins on major racing circuits. He was chosen Driver of the Year three times, and in 1992 was named Driver of the Quarter Century.