Through Superstar Racing Experience, Marco Andretti has received his first taste of stock car style competition this summer and it has only encouraged him to pursue more.
At 34 years old, Andretti is still in the prime of his physical potential, and even if the end of his full-time IndyCar Series tenure challenged him in unforeseen ways, the third-generation racer still wants to test himself behind the wheel of various disciplines.
NASCAR, specifically, has always been on his radar but Andretti was too committed to his IndyCar ambitions to really pursue the option until his retirement back in January.
When asked if his multidiscipline world tour could include Late Model similar to the SRX cars, Andretti took it a step further and revealed that he was close to finalizing an agreement to race in the NASCAR Xfinity Series in some capacity.
“That would be cool, but if anything, I’d think it would be cool to do some Xfinity Series stuff,” Andretti said. “So, I’m actually, I’m in discussions already, looking at different opportunities at stuff.
“That would be fun. I don’t have a plan for this year and that’s what’s cool about my current situation, that I’m just picking up different situations and leaving them at different points depending on how I feel at any particular time.”
Andretti says he is still committed to the Indianapolis 500 every May and ‘believes’ he can accomplish that, while also wanting to continue on with SRX next year and beyond as ‘I really believe it has wings.’
In announcing his full-time retirement from IndyCar, Andretti said he would still be a fixture in motorsports and just wanted to race a wider variety of cars, almost in bucket list fashion.
He has found a summer in home in Superstar Racing Experience, where he has led laps and looked comfortable in a Stock Car setting with the willingness to make daring moves, including a three-wide gambit with Doug Coby and Tony Stewart in the debut event at Stafford.
Andretti says SRX has brought back a degree of ‘racing purity’ for him in that it’s just about having fun and chasing checkered flags.
“I’m still learning these cars,” Andretti said. “I don’t always know the proper etiquette in that sometimes I think I’m leaning on guys too hard or they tell me I’m leaning too hard on them, because with fenders, you can crash every single person if you wanted, but you know it’s coming back if you did.
“So, it’s about finding the balance between racing super classy like Bill Elliott, or Paul Tracy on the other end of the spectrum.”
Andretti won the second heat race at Eldora on dirt and wasn’t surprised, but wasn’t quite willing to predict that he would be in the mix each week either.
“I just tried to go in with an open mind, right,” Andretti said. “What was exciting about this series was the unknown. I didn’t know if I was going three laps down immediately or if I was going to win. I’m not surprised that we’re kind of in the mix. I’m pleased to have won a heat and been in the mix for a podium.
“I feel like I have unfinished business for the results we’ve had versus our performance. We’ve had bad draws and I’m excited to start on pole this weekend for the first heat. We need to be better about being in the right place and avoiding trouble.”
Andretti won twice during a 15 year Indy Racing League and IndyCar Series tenure. The first came in his rookie season at Sonoma with his other victory coming at Iowa in 2007.
Andretti has remained a threat to win the Indianapolis 500 every season since his debut, nearly winning against his father in the 2006 race before both were passed by Sam Hornish Jr.
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