An appreciation of John Anderson


One of motor racing’s truly great guys passed away in Indianapolis this week. John Anderson, known to all as ‘Ando’, suffered a heart attack while playing racquetball on Thursday. An Australian who came to the United States more than 30 years ago, Ando was an old-school master mechanic and fabricator who could build anything and everything. He was also a very funny man, a hilarious storyteller and a kindly soul.


Anderson worked in Formula 5000, Can-Am, Indycars and the American Le Mans Series and became one of the finest team managers in the business. In recent decades he was a key man at PacWest, Team Green and Andretti-Green, running Dario Franchitti’s car at Andretti-Green in 2007 when he won his first Indianapolis 500 and IndyCar title. In 2008 and ‘09 Anderson ran Gil de Ferran’s ALMS team and spent three months last winter trying to salvage Peter Windsor’s USF1 outfit.

Ando was also an enthusiastic amateur aviator who loved to fly his own light plane. But most of all he was a tireless worker who could motivate people like few others with his superb skills, sharp eye and bottomless pit of humour. Our thoughts this week are with John’s wife Lesley, his extended family and many friends around the world.


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