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Mario to be honoured


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#1 D-Type

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 13:15

Has anybody noticed this report ? Mario Andretti is to be made a Commendatore

Apart from Enzo Ferrari, has anybody else in the racing world ever receive this honour?

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#2 West3

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 17:44

Copied and pasted from another forum:

A few years ago he was voted by both the fans and media as America’s greatest driver of the twentieth century. As everyone knows, Mario Andretti’s track record is unequalled. His record of success is the most diverse in the sport’s history, embracing the F1 world championship, USAC and CART championships, victories in the Indy 500, the Daytona 500, as well as Sebring and Daytona long-distance sports car races, the Pike’s Peak Hillclimb, and an IROC championship back in the days when that series meant something.

Andretti is ranked second only to A.J. Foyt in all-time Champ Car wins and is unchallenged as the leading all-time Champ Car pole winner. And of course, he also enjoyed one of the longest competitive racing careers in history, spanning more than thirty years, and is the only man to have won a Champ Car race after his fiftieth birthday. His glittering record includes more than one hundred wins in almost every conceivable type of race car known to man.

Over the years, Mario has earned many awards and accolades, but on Monday, October 23 in New York City, he will be recognized in a very special way. Andretti will receive an Italian knighthood--Commendatore Ordine all Merito della Repubblica Italiana--in a private ceremony performed by Italy’s consul-general at the Columbus Citizen’s Foundation on 69th Street. He will become the first Italian-born racing driver to receive the accolade. “It’s quite an honor for our sport,” Andretti remarked. “Usually it’s professors, scholars, scientists and politicians.”

Enzo Ferrari is the only other Italian-born racing legend to be recognized in this way. None of the great Italian drivers like Tazio Nuvolari or Alberto Ascari were honored in this way, although two Brit racers, plus a Scot and an Australian have been knighted in the UK by Queen Elizabeth.

“I’m really, really pleased,” Mario said. “It took me aback when I first heard about it. It makes me really happy. I feel really good about it. You look back at our counterparts in England with Sir Jackie Stewart and Sir Stirling Moss and Sir Jack Brabham and Sir John Surtees.

“Now,” he added, only half-joking, “we’ll have a token Italian in there with them.”

#3 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 17:45

Originally posted by D-Type
Has anybody noticed this report ? Mario Andretti is to be made a Commendatore

Apart from Enzo Ferrari, has anybody else in the racing world ever receive this honour?


Jean Todt and Michael Schumacher

#4 Wolf

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 17:50

D-type, it's not that uncommon, even Rubens got some 'knighthood' (as did Brawn, Todt, and sveral others few years back- ISTR Todt got Commendatore too), and there is certain Commendatore Michael Schumacher to be mentioned too. Before You ask- yes, I'm serious.

#5 Tim Murray

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 18:17

. . . two Brit racers, plus a Scot . . .


:confused: :confused:

. . . Sir John Surtees . . .


:confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:

#6 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 18:20

The title of commendatore is quite ancient and antique. It surprises me that it is still awarded. It even sounds silly (will not mention MS and JT as it has been discussed in another thread). Enzo Ferrari disliked to be named commendatore as he received the title from the then fascist regime of Italy before the war and preferred to be titled Ingegnere. I wonder if anyone will ever call Mario commendatore in a discussion , interview, etc. Is Stirling Moss called Sir in the daily life of a retired racing driver?

#7 David McKinney

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 18:48

Originally posted by Arjan de Roos
s Stirling Moss called Sir in the daily life of a retired racing driver?

Of course he is - it's his title
Friends of course would be expected to drop the 'Sir'

#8 caneparo

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 19:51

Originally posted by Wolf
D-type, it's not that uncommon, even Rubens got some 'knighthood' (as did Brawn, Todt, and sveral others few years back- ISTR Todt got Commendatore too), and there is certain Commendatore Michael Schumacher to be mentioned too. Before You ask- yes, I'm serious.


yes it's true!! And we even have ufficiale Luciano Burti :D :up:

#9 Vitesse2

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 20:21

Originally posted by Tim Murray
Sir John Surtees

:confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:

It was rumoured last year that JS was up for a K. Never happened. But it occurs quite a lot on Google!

#10 cosworth bdg

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Posted 24 October 2006 - 02:07

Originally posted by Ross Stonefeld


Jean Todt and Michael Schumacher

A definite yes to recognition of these two. They really made FERRARI racing what they are today..........................