The Andretti Autosport family is no stranger to victory at Barber Motorsports Park – they won two years in a row with the No. 28 of Ryan Hunter-Reay, who grabbed the first of those wins from the pole position in 2013.
Now, Hunter-Reay’s teammate, Marco Andretti is looking to cash in on all the progress he’s made this season, which started with a vast personal change in the off-season… admittedly getting out of his own head and turning his attitude toward the positive.
Andretti has joined us for every “fastest-drivers-of-the-day” presser so far this year (St. Pete, Long Beach), showing solid pace and the fact that his car is indeed capable of running at the front of the pack.
However, the No. 27 UFD Racing Honda team has had trouble finding that same consistency in qualifying or during race time. He addressed harnessing that power during qualifying for starters, given the importance of starting position at Barber:
“I think it’s just going to be about maximizing when it counts. It’s going to be doing it on that lap and putting all my sectors together, and we’ve got to do it three times, three rounds. That’s going to be the plan. It seems we have a pretty good car. It’s going to come down to whether I can put it together.”
The 30-year old driver is hungry for results this season, indulging us to say he’s really looking forward to this entire season and I think that speaks to his confidence – not just in himself, but in his team and their ability to ‘get it right’.
He’s happy to be Top 10 in championship points right now and knows that they can produce even better results. St. Pete started out well for him, when he climbed up 8 positions through the race to finish P7. Long Beach is probably a weekend that Andretti and his entire team would prefer to forget though, as all four cars retired during the contest.
And I’ll give you my honest opinion, the smile on Andretti’s face today proves to me that he has indeed perfected “letting go” of the bad stuff in order to progress in the series and his own career. Now all he needs to do is draw that focus into qualifying tomorrow.
One step at a time… or in this case, one lap.