John Andretti, former NASCAR and IndyCar driver, dies at 56

File photo, former race car driver John Andretti. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)
Caption
File photo, former race car driver John Andretti. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

Former IndyCar and NASCAR winner John Andretti died Thursday after a three-year battle with colon cancer.

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

In 2019, John Andretti’s son, Jarrett, fulfilled John’s wish to become the seventh Andretti to race in the Indianapolis 500.

Andretti was diagnosed with colon cancer in January 2017, and doctors later determined the disease had spread to his liver. He made his diagnosis public in May 2017 and relied on social media to keep fans abreast of his condition.

Andretti started 49 consecutive IndyCar races in 1990-92 before moving to NASCAR, where he made 29 or more starts every year from 1994 through 2003. He was the first driver to attempt the Memorial Day double — racing 500 miles at Indy and 600 miles in Charlotte in the same day.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.