comscore Versatile race-car driver John Andretti dies at 56 | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Versatile race-car driver John Andretti dies at 56

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                John Andretti smiles as he climbs from his car after qualifying for the NASCAR auto race at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., in 2007. Andretti, a member of one of racing’s most families, has died following a battle with colon cancer, according to a Twitter post from Andretti Autosports on Wednesday. He was 56.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    John Andretti smiles as he climbs from his car after qualifying for the NASCAR auto race at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., in 2007. Andretti, a member of one of racing’s most families, has died following a battle with colon cancer, according to a Twitter post from Andretti Autosports on Wednesday. He was 56.

INDIANAPOLIS >> John Andretti, a member of one of auto racing’s most famous families and the first driver to attempt the Indianapolis 500 and NASCAR’s 600-mile race in North Carolina on the same day, has died. He was 56 and had spent the last three years battling colon cancer.

Andretti Autosports, which is owned by Andretti’s cousin, Michael, announced the death today.

Andretti’s cousin and uncle, Mario, were longtime fan favorites in the IndyCar Series and beyond.

But John Andretti developed his own fan base at Indy in part because he was the first driver to attempt the Memorial Day double — running in both the 500 and the 600-mile night race outside Charlotte, North Carolina.

Andretti made 49 consecutive IndyCar starts from 1990-92 before moving to NASCAR, where he started at least 29 races every season from 1994-2003. He won three times and helped raise money for Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis through his initiative Race 4 Riley.

He was diagnosed with colon cancer in January 2017. Doctors later determined the disease had spread to his liver.

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