OW.com Interview With Marco Andretti

**This is me cross posting an interview I did on Open-Wheels.com. Through Open Wheels, I was able to snag a pretty amazing driver to do an interview with. Thanks to David Bolton, co-founder of Open Wheels, and the PR staff of Andretti Autosport in Alex White and Ryann Rigsby for their amazing help, as it literally took two days to get this done! And of course, thanks to Marco Andretti for his time!**

Marco Andretti. Son of Michael and grandson of Mario. He carries the prestigious Andretti name. Many would crack under the pressure. But Marco finds a way to take it in stride. MA has been racing in Indycar since 2006, winning a race in his first season with Andretti Green Racing (now Andretti Autosport) at Sonoma. In 116 starts, Marco has an average starting position of P11 and an average finish of P12, all with Andretti Autosport. I fully expect him to be considered the favorite for this year's Indianapolis 500 after a strong showing last year that ended with a hard crash. But at the young age of 26, Marco still has plenty of time to rack up wins and championships, which I fully expect him to do! Marco's answered are labeled MA. Here is our interview, enjoy:

1) You have had a great start to your 2013 Indycar campaign (congrats!). How do you look to carry the momentum into future races, especially at a place like Long Beach where your last two starts there resulted in a pit incident with Sebastien Bourdais in 2011 and a scary accident with Graham Rahal last year? 

MA: I want to win long beach in the worst way. This is a place that has a lot of IndyCar history- winning here would be a true privilege. I think if we get a win at this point in the season, it will put the RC Cola team in a position that will make us tough to beat the rest of the year.

2) Last year had some high points and some low points for you. How do you feel about your overall performance was in 2012? Anything you would like to "do over"? 

MA: Results wise, 2012 was a frustrating season for me. We were one of the top contenders to beat at Indianapolis and Iowa, and ended the year with a pole. Having said that, I would want to do over all of 2012. 

3) It's been said that you traveled to England to consult a driving coach. This and other things you've done in the offseason have clearly paid dividends so far. How has your work in this past offseason helped you on the track? 

MA: I worked hard and studied how I was overdriving the car. I wanted to be more effective in applying my skills on the track. It was pretty crucial to improve as a competitor that I make the necessary changes to my driving. 

Marco Andretti - Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama - Day 3
How 'bout that livery?! Pretty awesome if you ask me! Marco racing at
Barber last weekend (Photo: Nick Laham/Getty Images North America)

4) What does the Andretti name mean to you? 

MA: The first thing that comes to mind is family, tradition, and passion. I am proud to be a part of that name, and what ‘Andretti’ means to racing. It’s a real honor.

5) You've had 17 races in the DW12 and logged hundreds of hours in it. What do you like and dislike about the car? Anything you'd like to see changed? 

MA: I think it is a great car. There is a heck of a lot of down force, but I would like to see about 200 more horsepower. I really enjoy piloting the No. 25 RC Cola car.

6) What are your goals for the rest of the season? 

MA: Staying consistent is always important. I’ve learned that as long as you take care of the small things, the bigger picture will work itself out. Right now, my main goals are winning Long beach, Indy, Toronto and the championship. 

7) Who do you consider your biggest rival in Indycar? 

MA: Graham (Rahal) for sure. He’s a great driver and an even more fierce competitor.

Marco Andretti at Milwaukee - Courtesy INDYCAR/LAT USA
Marco in front of James Jakes and rival Graham Rahal
at Milwaukee in 2012 (Photo: Indycar/LAT USA)

8) You have a very large fan base that is very loyal to you. What does it mean to have so many fans supporting you? 

MA: Fans are the reason we are able to do what we love. We owe it all to them!

Thanks so much to Marco Andretti, PR personnel Alex White and Ryann Rigsby, as well as David Bolton of Open Wheels! What an honor to interview Marco. Let us know what you think!

Link: http://open-wheels.com/hickey-interview-with-marco-andretti/

-Matthew Hickey