Marco Andretti Set for GP2 Test

Marco Andretti is set to test a GP2 car later this year, in the hope of following his father's and grandfather's footsteps into Formula One

Marco Andretti Set for GP2 Test

18-year-old Andretti, son of Michael and grandson of Mario, has set his sight on a career that would lead him into Formula One and he says a GP2 test has already been confirmed.

"My main ambition is to race in F1," young Andretti told Italian magazine Autosprint. "That's why in October I will test a GP2 car at Paul Ricard, and all the details have been finalised already."

ART team principal Nicolas Todt told Autosport-Atlas that his team has been in touch with Andretti, but he said the test was not confirmed yet.

"We have spoken with him, yes," Todt said. "There is nothing confirmed, but we had some nice talks and there is a big possibility of giving him a test [at the conclusion of the season]."

Andretti, from Nazareth, Pennsylvania, is currently racing in the Infiniti Pro series in the Unitied States - the support series to the Indy Racing League, where his father Michael runs the Andretti-Green team, which won the Indianapolis 500 in May with points leader Dan Wheldon.

And Marco Andretti revealed his father has already offered him to race in IRL.

"I have to be realistic: nobody knows me in Europe, they've never seen me racing, I have an important name but this doesn't mean anything," he said. "So my father offered me some tests in IRL, on road tracks, like Sebring and on an oval, to see if I like the series.

"Maybe the most logical thing would be to race there for a couple of seasons, and if I'll be successful I'll then try to play the F1 card. [But] My father wants only the best for me, he would never advice me against racing in F1 just because he owns a team in IRL."

He admitted, however, that grandfather Mario would rather see him race in Europe and ultimately land a seat in F1 - to become the first third-generation driver, after his father raced in 1993 for McLaren, and his grandfather starting 128 Grands Prix between 1968 and 1982, winning the World Championship with Lotus in 1978.

"Let's say they both want the best for my career," Marco said. "Mario perhaps would have preferred if I started immediately in Europe with F3, but Michael's contacts made it easier to start in America. I'm curious to see how the GP2 test will go, then we'll see.

"If I'll race in IRL, then I'll have to get down to work on the ovals, because my knowledge of that kind of tracks is limited, otherwise I'll race in Europe. At that point it will be a decision with no compromises or nostalgia for home of the States. Because I want to get to F1, as soon as possible."

Mario Andretti himself admitted he would love to see his grandson make it into Formula One, with none other than his former team Ferrari.

"Personally I'd prefer if Marco followed the European route, racing in GP2 in 2006 and then be ready for F1," the legendary driver, who also won the Indy 500 as well as NASCAR's Daytona 500, told the Italian magazine.

"If this would be possible with Ferrari, then it would be perfect. I'm told that Ferrari is thinking about the future post Michael Schumacher. If they had him testing it would be fantastic and they would understand that they have a real talent in front of them. And I say this not because he's my grandson but because I've seen plenty of drivers."

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