IndyCar Driver Preview: Graham Rahal

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#15 Graham Rahal

  • Team: Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  • Engine: Honda
  • Sponsors: Midas
  • 2012: 10th Place, 1 Podium

2012 WRAP: Expectations were high as young Rahal surged towards the end of 2011 in the Service Central Ganassi camp. Yet they were never fully maximized throughout his second season in the team. Qualifying left a lot to be desired – Rahal didn’t once make the Firestone Fast Six – and that left him playing catch-up during the races. Rahal lost a sure win at Texas when he bounced off the wall with two laps to go, and he only had three other top-five finishes.

2013 OUTLOOK: It was inevitable that Graham would eventually join his father Bobby’s team on a full-time basis. But to the now 24-year-old’s credit, he’s already gathered six seasons of experience with other teams before joining the family business. He knows what makes a successful organization and the foundation established where he’s the clear team leader, with a solid engineering group, should help both father and son as they embark on the 2013 campaign. I’d expect Rahal to win his first race since 2008, as a 19-year-old in St. Petersburg. 

Marco Andretti to drive throwback scheme to honor 25th anniversary of grandfather Mario’s last win

Photo courtesy Andretti-Herta Autosport
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Marco Andretti wanted to do something really special to honor the 25th anniversary of grandfather Mario Andretti’s final Indy car win in 1993 at Phoenix International Raceway (now known as ISM Raceway).

So the third-generation Andretti, along with his team, Andretti-Herta Autosport, came up with a plan and design that will take longtime race fans back in time when it appears early next month for the Phoenix Grand Prix.

Marco Andretti’s No. 98 Oberto Beef Jerky Circle K/Curb Honda will be decked out in the colors of the car his grandfather won his last race on the one-mile short track 25 years ago.

“When the idea of a throwback livery celebrating my grandfather’s final win was thrown around, Oberto was ready to get to the drawing board,” Marco Andretti said in a media release. “The black, white and red car resembles many of my family’s race cars and was a big part of my life growing up.

“It’s really cool to be able to add one of my cars to that family legacy.”

The car is a virtual double of the legendary Newman-Haas Racing and Texaco/Havoline-sponsored car Mario drove on that celebratory day in the Valley of the Sun 2 ½ decades ago.

Various events and ceremonies during the April 6-7 race weekend will honor the senior Andretti. That includes several of his former competitors who will be on hand to celebrate with Mario, including Emerson Fittipaldi, Bobby Rahal, Jimmy Vasser, Paul Tracy, Arie Luyendyk, and of course, son Michael Andretti and grandson Marco Andretti.

Check out what happened on that day 25 years ago:

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