Marco Andretti has chosen to reduce his NTT IndyCar Series programme for 2021.
The American, with the very famous last name, has chosen only to do the Indianapolis 500 race this year.
He will instead refocus and look at potential other opportunities in the racing work, he reveals. Especially sportscar racing has his interest, where he mentions the Daytona 24 Hours, Sebring 12 Hours and Le Mans as interesting races for him.
He has previously raced at Le Mans in 2010 for Rebellion Racing, where he shared an LMP1 car with Neel Jani and Nicolas Prost. He was also part of the Andretti Green Racing programme, when they raced an Acura LMP2 in the American Le Mans Series in 2008, setting an incredible LMP2 Pole Position at Sebring, where he took Turn 1 flat out. That has been tried by many other drivers since that time, but it usually ends up all wrong, if they hit one of the bumps at a bad angle.
He has raced for 15 seasons in Indycar, but has only claimed two victories in all those years – one in 2006 and one in 2011.
The absolute highlight of his career, came at the Indy 500 2020, where he took an impressive Pole Position. The lead, however, didn’t even last until Turn 1, and he ended up finishing only 13th in the race.
He almost had a sensational debut at the Indy 500 back in 2006, where he was starting the very final lap in the lead, and was only overtaken a few meters before the finish line by Sam Hornish Jr. – only 0,0635 seconds behind him. He has claimed a further three podium spots in the race since then.
It would appear, that it’s all in his head, that he can’t keep the focus. When he has managed a good result in a race or a season, it’s followed by a bad one.
The 2020 season was actually his worst season overall by far, finishing only 20th in the driver’s standings. It was even worse that he only finished 23rd amongst the entrants, so the team will miss out on more than 1 Million dollars in Leader Circle bonus, so they would have to find those at sponsors instead. Marco was already part-owner of the car, since a few years ago. If those lack of money has been a factor too, is not really answered by the team. The wording in the press release, is that Marco has chosen himself to pull out as a full-season driver for 2021.
The replacement for him, in the car that is partly owned and run by Bryan Herta, in collaboration with Andretti Autosport, is still not known.
Andretti Autosport has already announced Alexander Rossi, Colton Herta and Ryan Hunter-Reay for the upcoming season, while James Hinchcliffe is expected to race for the team as well.