Mario Andretti is getting a special honor from the city of Indianapolis ahead of the 50th anniversary of his Indianapolis 500 win.
On May 13, the Indiana city honored the racing icon by renaming a portion of a street downtown Mario Andretti Drive as part of the celebrations honoring the 1969 Indy 500 win.
Andretti himself helped put up the sign, getting into a cherry picker to help hang the placard at the corner of Washington and Meridian through the 2019 Indy 500 scheduled for Sunday, May 26.
And there it is!May 13, 2019
"My very own street," Andretti wrote alongside the announcement on Twitter. "Now I need to hang the speed limit sign. I brought a Sharpie with me just in case I don't like it."
Ahead of the 50th anniversary, Andretti opened up about the win in an interview with Fox News Auto, admitting that the victory both was and wasn't the most important moment of his racing career.
"Unfortunately, your career is judged by that race, which is unfair to the drivers that were capable and never won it," he explained. "The Italian Grand Prix was special for me, too. But Indy has that aura about it, that tradition. Winning Indy, it seems like everyone remembers that. Every day, when I go to a racetrack or even an airport everyone wants to talk about it, but that’s not the only race that I won. But it’s got that value. When I crossed the finish line, I had that huge weight lifted off my shoulders."
Celebrating the win even today is special to Andretti as well.
"In 2018 they celebrated the 40th anniversary of my Formula 1 championship, but it was nothing like the celebration they have for me in Indy this year," he continued.m"What Indianapolis is doing for me is humbling. It’s amazing what they have planned with an exhibit at the [Indianapolis Motor Speedway] museum and the other things around town. I’m over the moon about it. I never thought it would happen in my career, not 50 years later."0comments
The Indianapolis 500 airs Sunday, May 26 on NBC.
Photo credit: Twitter/Indianapolis Motor Speedway