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Biography on K&N Racer Jake Andreotti, Teenage Oval Track Racing Prodigy

Team Andreotti has even filmed and posted them washing and reusing K&N filter elements

Jake has been using K&N Filters on his race cars and his family's street cars for years

When your last name is Andreotti and you race cars, you’re bound to be mistaken for an Andretti. And while both families hail from the same region of Italy, the Andretti family you know is based in Pennsylvania. The Andreotti family you’re going to learn much more in a minute is based in California.

In particular, it’s Jake Andreotti you’ll be hearing more about. At the ripe old age of 14 he’s already won numerous Quarter Midget titles, and in doing so, defeated drivers two to three times his age. And like the Pennsylvania Andretti family, a passion for racing goes back several generations in the Andreotti clan.

Jake was more than happy to give us a little family history lesson: “My maternal great grandfather William Smith built the bodies for Ken Brenneman who was the very first Midget champion in 1933 and 1934 (and is credited with staging the first-ever professional midget race). He also built a quarter midget for my grandfather John Smith in 1950 that he ran during intermissions at the Pacific Indoor Midget Championship races held in an old exhibition hall in Oakland, California, in 1953 and 1954.” Jake's great uncle Louie Odom is remembered by locals for putting what's now called a Sprint Car through the roof of his own parts and machine shop adjacent to the long-closed Oakland Stadium.

Jake's family has been long involved in short track racing in the Bay Area

Jake's grandfather in a Quarter Midget he drove between indoor midget races in Oakland

But the family’s commitment to racing didn’t stop there. Jake takes up the story: “The whole family is into racing, car shows, etc. My dad competed in bracket racing in one of his 1965 Fords at Sears Point, now Sonoma Raceway. I grew up going to car shows as we have a few show cars as well; I’m just beginning to restore a 1965 Ford Mustang fastback myself. Then my dad took me to a quarter midget race when I was very young and I knew I wanted to get in one. My love of racing grew from there on. Unfortunately, my dad no longer has time to race himself as he’s always supporting me and helping me with my cars.”

K&N: So Jake, when did the racing bug bite hard?

Jake Andreotti: “I guess I realized I was competitive once I started racing Junior Stock Quarter Midgets. The faster car, tougher competition, and the higher speeds started and became an addiction.”

By the time he graduated from Quarter Midgets Jake left an impressive record in his wake. From 2008-2013 Jake raced in six different sub-classes, earned five National Championships, 20 Championship Series Titles, and set track records across the Western US.

A basically unraced chassis was quickly shorted and driven to the front by Jake.

Last year it was on display at SEMA, this year Jake took the Farrell Frameworks to a win a Dixon

Now you’re racing Micro Sprints, and not only have you won races, you’ve taken the track championships at Lemoore two years running and won the 2015 Super 600 King of California.

K&N: You’re up against drivers who are maybe twice or even three times your age. How does that go over when they get beat by a teenager?

JA: “The age difference makes me have to be even better. I have to earn the respect of my competitors. I don’t want them to think of me because of my age but more of my abilities. There have been times, when I remove my helmet, they are shocked to see how young I am. The competition has been impressed, shocked, and sometimes taken aback when I place ahead of them but mostly I’m treated the same. There was the Budweiser Grand Prix at Plaza Park Raceway in Visalia, California, that I won and the announcer came down with a bottle of Budweiser beer and realized once I took my helmet off that a can of Coke was better, more age appropriate.

K&N: Do you have a plan or target for when you reach 18 years old?

JA: “I’d love to be racing in the K&N Pro Series back East with a few wins attached to my name. My ultimate goal is the Monster Energy Cup series of NASCAR.”

K&N: OK, here’s a fun what-if question: If there were a class of car that you could just go and test for a day, what would it be?

Despite his win Jake had a bit of bad luck that kept him off the top of the score sheet

Jake finished 3rd out of 29 drivers in the 2017 California Speedweek - four races in five days

JA: “Test for a day, Formula 1. Race for the day, a Cup car – easily.”

K&N: We mentioned earlier about the similarity between your last name and that of the famous racing family of Nazareth. Do you ever get mistaken for a member of that clan?

JA: "All the time! Funny you asked because we ordered seatbelts and there was a delay in receiving them so we called the vendor. Turns out they were sent to Jarrett Andretti. My dad’s name is Jared Andreotti, so you can see where the confusion came from. We have met Mario Andretti a few times and asked what part of Italy their family is from and it turns out both families are from the same area. We have often wondered if we could be related but haven’t looked into it. If I compete at an unfamiliar race track they will refer to me as Jake Andretti or when we travel we’ve been stopped several times asking if Mario is with us. It’s definitely not a bad thing being associated with the Andrettis though!”

K&N: In closing, is there anything you’d like to share with the readers?

JA: “I love representing such a great company like K&N, which has a huge amount of respect in the racing industry and trusts me enough to represent them. It’s the support of the people who work for K&N as well as their proven products that make them apart of the 7p Team.


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