Andretti plans 'building on' IndyFest success in '13

CREATED Jan 16, 2013

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  • Photo: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

MILWAUKEE - One of Indy Car's most recognizable names is pushing for the Milwaukee race he brought back to become a new Father's Day tradition in our area.

"My goal is to make Father's Day weekend, on Saturday, you go out to the Milwaukee Mile," Michael Andretti said about the return of IndyFest to the Milwaukee Mile at State Fair Park.  He's promoting the race this week in Milwaukee.

Andretti told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Greg Matzek about how, after a long hiatus from Indy Car races in Milwaukee, they hoped to build on last year's Milwaukee 225 race and build the fan base back for the 2013 edition.

"Especially after the event, I could not believe the number of people who came up to me and thanked me for bringing it back on the schedule.  People were almost in tears.  There's a lot of passion here for racing.  It is the oldest race track in the world.  It has so much history and tradition for Indy Car racing.  We've just got to get (fans) back out there.  Hopefully, more will come out.  I think we've gone beyond (skepticism) and people see this thing is for real."

Andretti said the Milwaukee Mile has major importance for his family, and for other Indy Car drivers.

"We won a lot of races here.  I had my first pole position year.  My son Marco had his first pole position here.  Dad (Mario) won many races.  We had an all-Andretti podium back in 1991.  There's a lot of special meaning to me personally."

"For the drivers, it's one of the highlights of the year to come here and race at this track.  The track is one of the best to drive.  It's difficult to drive, but when you get it right, it pays you back.  We all love coming here."