Lifestyle & Human Interest

Racing Legends: Mario Andretti Receives Special 79th Birthday Gift from 'BFF' AJ Foyt


Racing legend A.J. Foyt sent a bottle of wine labeled with an image of one of his most famous victories as birthday gift to his longtime rival, Mario Andretti.

Foyt and Andretti are considered to be two of the best race car drivers of all time, and enjoyed besting one another throughout their careers.

They may not be meeting on the racetrack any longer, but both drivers still seem to enjoy finding an opportunity to keep the rivalry alive.

In 2018, Andretti wished Foyt a happy birthday on Twitter, joking that he was baking a cake for his “BFF.”

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Foyt does not use Twitter, but did respond to Andretti’s message by asking his team to explain the term “BFF” — Best Friend Forever.

Both racers now own wineries, as if they needed another reason to compete. When Andretti turned 79 this year, Foyt had the perfect bottle of wine to send to his fiercest rival and “BFF.”

Andretti posted a photo of the bottle of wine he received —  the A.J. Foyt 1. The label on the bottle features an image of Foyt’s famous victory in the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Foyt drove a No. 1 Ford GT40 Mark IV with his co-driver, the late Dan Gurney. The pair made history that day as “the only time an All-American team won the international classic with an all-American designed and built car,” according to Foyt Wines.

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Andretti was also in the race that day — but for him, the event was a disaster. According to Fox News, the pit crew had inadvertently installed a set of brake pads incorrectly during the race, causing Andretti to crash while driving at 150mph.

Andretti did not suffer any major injuries, but was pulled from the wreckage as his rival went on to win the race.

Andretti received the bottle of wine with a good sense of humor, thanking Foyt for such a “sweet gesture.”

“Look what my BFF AJ Foyt sent me for my birthday,” Andretti wrote on Twitter. “XOXO thank you BFF.”

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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