Andretti Name Returning To Springfield

The name Andretti is magic when it comes to American oval dirt racing. This Saturday the name returns to the Illinois State Fairgrounds mile in Springfield when Jarett Andretti makes his Traxxas USAC Silver Crown dirt debut in the “Tony Bettenhausen 100."

Jarett will be the third Andretti to test the Springfield mile. His great uncle Mario won the “Tony Bettenhausen 100" three times (1969, 1973 and 1974 and was USAC’s 1974 Silver Crown Champion. His father John competed in the 1985 race and finished seventh.

“I have to thank car owner Dennis McQuinn for the opportunity," says Jarett, USAC’s 2011 Eastern Ford Focus Champion. “It’s always been a dream of mine to compete on the dirt miles and I’m sure it’ll be a learning curve for me. Fortunately, I’ll have Dave Darland as a teammate to help me and I’ve already spent some time talking to Jack Hewitt who has been a great mentor."

Hewitt owns more USAC Silver Crown victories than anybody (23) and has three “Tony Bettenhausen 100" trophies in his collection.

Andretti, of Mooresville, N.C., made his USAC Sprint Car debut earlier this year and has spent some time this year competing in selected dirt-track races in the Midwest.

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