"It's been very hard, but over the years I've learned to adjust. It's Michael's life and his first love, and I just had to adjust. And now I like racing. You could even say I love it, I guess.... No, I can't say that. Can't say that. Because it's hard on the family life. We have two children now."
Here comes Marco—roooooooooom, rooooooooom!—and it is not a pretend noise, it is a real engine's song. And the helmet is red on silver.
"I can't even think of him in Indy Cars—you know?" says the boy's mother.
Should Marco indeed grow up to be a driver, says Mario, "I think, deep down, I'd love to see it. I'd love to see this dynasty, this name, carry on in the sport. It's a relatively young sport. I'm almost old enough to be part of the pioneering group after the war. To see him continue that into the 21st century, I think I'd like that. If he chooses that, I think he'll have a happy and proud Nonno."
Mario smiles, remembering how Dee Ann used to fret over Michael. "How many times did I hear 'What's the matter with you? You crazy? Why does he have to drive that boat with you? That's 700 horsepower!' But I'd just watch him operate that kind of horsepower, no problem. Constantly, I was putting myself in his shoes: 'Gosh, if I'd had that when I was a kid....' "