In 1978, racing against some of the best drivers in Formula 1 history, Mario Andretti became Formula 1 world champion with Lotus.
The Italian-born American’s victory was a long-held dream, but it was darkened by the death of his team mate Ronnie Peterson. Looking back 45 years in this week’s Beyond The Grid podcast, Mario remembers that year as a season of intense emotions.
In this week’s pod the 12-time Grand Prix winner tells host Tom Clarkson about his preparations for racing in Europe, his relationship with his visionary team boss Colin Chapman – and how he made changes to the set-up of his Lotus to gain a crucial advantage over his rivals.
Mario also shares his memories of battling brake problems to win the championship at Monza, before learning that his team mate and close friend Ronnie Peterson had lost his life after a crash.