Andretti Autosport’s 200th Win

Andretti Autosport driver Alexander Rossi. © [Andy Clary / Spacesuit Media]

Andretti Autosport driver Alexander Rossi. © [Andy Clary / Spacesuit Media]

By Allan Brewer

Alexander Rossi’s dominating win at Long Beach on Sunday was about more than just a car race. With the impressive showing from first practice to checkered flag, the Andretti Autosport team stamped its claim to the two hundredth all-time victory for the team.

“I am so proud of what we have been able to accomplish in a short period, to get to 200 wins,” beamed owner Michael Andretti post-race. “When you win as an owner, it is like a real shared win. You are happy not really just for yourself but for everybody.”

In approximately 15 years, Andretti has fielded 38 different drivers that won the race across IndyCar, Indy Lights and other series. The team has consistently brought competitive cars to all levels of motorsports and earned impressive results against their biggest rivals at Team Penske and Chip Ganassi Racing.

“I am just so happy for the whole team because they have earned it. Long Beach has always been a special place for us,” said Andretti. “I won my very first race here, and my very last race here. I know it was maybe not the most exciting race, but I loved it–just holding your breath hoping a yellow flag does not come out.”

“When I was getting close to the end of my driving career, I asked myself, ‘What am I going to do beyond driving?’” said Andretti. “I knew already that one of the things I liked was the business side of the racing, things like setting the team up. It is always a challenge, something new, something you have to deal with every day. I knew the opportunity would come up to do it.”

At the time, Michael was driving for Barry Green, who was ready to retire. “He gave me a really good deal to come in and purchase the team,” Andretti said. “I also learned a lot in my years with Carl Haas. It gave me the confidence, that maybe I knew a little bit what was going on. I was very lucky to drive for people like them.”

The change in point of view from cockpit to trackside monitoring station brought a fresh understanding to Andretti, one that serves him well now. “When I was a driver, there would be times where I’d wonder, ‘What the heck are you doing, why are you making this move?’ Now I understand many of the things, why they were doing things. It is definitely different being on the other side.”

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