Jeff Andretti

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Jeff Andretti
File:Jeff andretti at indy500 in 2012.JPG
Andretti at the 2012 Indianapolis 500 Legends Day
Nationality United States American
Born (1964-04-14) April 14, 1964 (age 55)
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States
Awards 1991 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year
1991 PPG Indy Car World Series Rookie of the Year
Champ Car career
21 races run over 5 years
Years active 1990–1994
Team(s) TEAMKAR International (1990)
Bayside Motorsports (1991)
A. J. Foyt Enterprises (1992)
Pagan Racing (1993)
Euromotorsports, Hemelgarn Racing (1994)
Best finish 15th (1991)
First race 1990 Miller Genuine Draft 200 (Milwaukee)
Last race 1994 Slick 50 200 (Phoenix)
Wins Podiums Poles
0 0 0
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career
3 races run over 1 year
Best finish 64th (1999)
First race 1999 Pronto Auto Parts 400K (Texas)
Last race 1999 NAPA Autocare 200 (Nazareth)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 0 0

Jeff Andretti (born April 14, 1964) is a former American race car driver. He competed in CART, and was the series' Rookie of the Year in 1991.

Personal life

Jeff is the youngest son of the legendary Italian-born Mario Andretti, younger brother of Michael Andretti, and uncle of Marco Andretti. Jeff is the nephew of Mario's twin Aldo Andretti and cousin of Aldo's sons John Andretti and Adam Andretti. The Andretti family became the first family to have four relatives (Michael, Mario, Jeff, and John) compete in the same series (CART).[1]

Racing career

In 1983, Jeff was racing in Formula Fords, winning both the USCA Pro Ford Championship and the Skip Barber Formula Ford Eastern Series. After qualifying for his Sports Car Club of America national license in 1984, he won the Northeast Division title in Formula Ford. In the November, he made his Formula Super Vee debut at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas. [2]

He continued in Formula Super Vee the following season, with the Ralt America outfit, winning the third race of the season, on the Milwaukee Mile. In the CART race at the same event, Mario did the same, marking the first time a father and son had started from pole and won races on the same track, in the same weekend. Jeff would also win in Cleveland and Phoenix, on his way the fifth in the Robert Bosch/Valvoline Championship. [3][2]

1986 saw Andretti move into the new American Racing Series with Ralph Sanchez Racing. Like his Milwaukee win the previous year, his only race win was a “family affair”. He earned his first ARS victory at Pocono, as his father wins the CART race at the same meeting, after his brother, Michael had started from pole, giving the Andretti family a “clean sweep.” Jeff would go on and finish second the overall ARS standing. For 1987, Jeff switched to Arciero Racing for another attempt at ARS, winning the opening race of the season, in Phoenix. He would revisit the top step of the podium in the series finale, in the race around Tamiami Park, Miami, snatching second place in the championship away from Tommy Byrne in the process. [2][4][5]

After in quiet 1988, Andretti took a new challenge for 1989, completing in the Toyota Atlantic, while developing a new chassis. Although the season was winless, he did earned Rookie of the Year honours, on his to sixth in the Atlantic Division. [2][4][6]

He moved into the CART ranks in 1990, joining his father and brother, making racing history, making it the first time a father has completed against his two sons in a CART race. After failing to qualifier for the Indianapolis 500, he make his race debut with TEAMKAR International in their Lola-Cosworth T89/00 in the Miller Genuine Draft 200 on the Milwaukee Mile, only to suffer mechanical problems and not finish. He sat out the rest of the season, returning in 1991, doing a full season with Bayside Disposal Racing, driving their Texaco Havoline Star sponsored Lola-Cosworth T91/00. With four top ten finishes throughout the season, three of which were the first three races, the best being a 7th place in the Gold Coast IndyCar Grand Prix; the race incidentally won by his cousin, John, earning the CART Rookie of the Year title. [7][2][8]

In the May of 1991, Jeff would qualify 11th for the Indianapolis 500, coupled with an outstanding performance before mechanical problems earned him the Indy 500 Rookie of the Year title. He followed his Mario and Michael in making it the first time ever, that three members of the same family have achieved this. [9]

Earlier that year, Jeff joined Mario and Michael to race for Jochen Dauer Racing in the SunBank 24 at Daytona.Although their Porsche 962C was classified in fifth place, they failed to finish due to overheating. [10]

Aftermath of the crash at the 1992 Indy 500.

Without for full time drive for 1992, Andretti returned to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with A. J. Foyt Enterprises. Unfortunately, he became yet another victim of the infamous Andretti Curse at the famed race track when on lap 109, a right rear wheel came loose off his car at Turn 2 and he crashed violently head-on into the wall, smashing both his legs. He spent three weeks at the Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, before the long road to recovery, determined to race again in 1993. [11][2]

It was February 1993, when Andretti set the (then) unofficial closed-course speed record for IndyCars of 234.50 mph, the fastest speed ever recorded at Texas World Speedway, while testing for the Indianapolis 500. This marked his first time back in an IndyCar since the accident the previous year. Andretti's fast run came at the conclusion of two days of testing where he consistently posted laps in the 230 mph range. Andretti's Buick-powered Lola was prepared by Pagan Racing. It was at the Indy, that Jeff made his complete his comeback, only to record a third straight DNF. [12][2]

The accident severely hampered Andretti's career, at least in terms of his competitiveness, since he was never the same afterwards. In 1994, Jeff did a one-off race with Euromotorsports, finishing 17th in the Slick 50 200, held at the Phoenix International Raceway, albeit 21 laps adrift. Come May, Jeff had switched to Hemelgarn Racing, but he’s bid for a fourth consecutive start failed due to a blown Buick engine. [13]>[2]

He later managed, however, to come back and race full-time in the Indy Lights with Canaska Racing in 1995, but recorded just one top-ten finish. For 1996, he step away from open-wheel racing and joined the tin-top brigade, racing to seventh place overall in the North American Touring Car Championship in a Leitzinger Racing prepared Ford Mondeo. After a gap of three year, he moved to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, driving the No. 94 Chevrolet for Enerjetix Motorsports, he raced in three events in 1999, posting a best finish of 30th at the Milwaukee Mile. [2][4][14][15]

Andretti is now retired from competitive racing, and works as a driving instructor.[16]

Racing record

Career highlights

Season Series Position Team Car
1985 Robert Bosch Formula Super Vee Championship [17][18] 5th Ralt American Ralt-Volkswagen RT5
1986 CART American Racing Series [19][20] 2nd Ralph Sanchez Racing March-Buick 86A/2
1987 CART American Racing Series [21][22] 2nd Arciero Racing March-Buick 86A
1988 HFC American Racing Series [23][24] 21st Hemelgarn Racing
Agapiou Racing
March-Buick 86A
1989 SCCA Toyota Atlantic Championship - Atlantic Division [6][25] 6th Newman Racing Reynard-Toyota 89H
HFC American Racing Series [26][27] 27th Baci Racing March-Buick 86A
1990 CART PPG Indy Car World Series [28] 38th TEAMKAR International Lola-Cosworth T89/00
1991 CART PPG Indy Car World Series [29] 15th Bayside Disposal Racing Lola-Cosworth T91/00
USAC Gold Crown Series [30] 15th Bayside Disposal Racing Lola-Cosworth T91/00
Camel GT Championship season [31][32] 29th Jochen Dauer Racing Porsche 962C
1992 USAC Gold Crown Series [33] 18th A. J. Foyt Enterprises Lola-Chevrolet T91/00
CART PPG Indy Car World Series [34] 49th A. J. Foyt Enterprises Lola-Chevrolet T91/00
1993 USAC Gold Crown Series [35] 29th Pagan Racing Lola-Buick T92/00
CART PPG Indy Car World Series [36] 53rd Pagan Racing Lola-Buick T92/00
1994 CART PPG Indy Car World Series [37][38] 44th Euromotosport
Hemelgarn Racing
Lola-Ilmor T93/00
Lola-Buick T92/00
1995 PPG/Firestone Indy Lights Championship powered by Buick [39][40] 19th Camaska Racing Lola-Buick T93/20
1996 North American Touring Car Championship [41][42] 7th Leitzinger Racing Ford Mondeo Ghia
1999 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series [43][44] 64th Enerjetix Motorsports Chevrolet Silverado

SCCA National Championship Runoffs

Year Track Car Engine Class Finish Start Status
1984 Road Atlanta Swift DB1 Ford Formula Ford 35 2 Retired

Complete 24 Hours of Daytona results

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1984 United States 901 Shop United States Mike Schaefer
United States Nick Nicholson
United States Jeff Refenning
Porsche 911 SC GTU 258 43rd
1988 Italy Buick Momo March United States Steve Phillips
Republic of Ireland Michael Roe
March-Buick 86G GTP 485 53rd
1991 West Germany Jochen Dauer Racing United States Mario Andretti
United States Michael Andretti
Porsche 962C GTP 663 5th

Complete 12 Hours of Sebring results

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1993 United States Auto Toy Store South Africa Wayne Taylor
United States Morris Shirazi
Spice-Chevrolet SE90P GTP 165 37th

American Open Wheel racing results


American Racing Series / Indy Lights


Indianapolis 500

Year Chassis Engine Start Finish
1990 Lola T89/00 Cosworth DFS V8t DNQ
1991 Lola T91/00 Cosworth DFS V8t 11 15
1992 Lola T91/00 Chevrolet 265C V8t 20 18
1993 Lola T92/00 Buick 3300 V6t 16 29
1994 Lola T92/00 Buick 3300 V6t DNQ


(key) (Bold – Pole position awarded by qualifying time. Italics – Pole position earned by points standings or practice time. * – Most laps led.)

Craftsman Truck Series

North American Touring Car Championship



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External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Eddie Cheever
Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year
Succeeded by
Lyn St. James
Preceded by
Eddie Cheever
CART Rookie of the Year
Succeeded by
Stefan Johansson