Patricio O'Ward arrived on the Mazda Road to Indy scene in 2015 with a poise and realistic outlook not often seen from a driver his age. The Texas resident moved from karts to cars in 2013, racing in a variety of series on different continents. He made the decision to drive formula cars in Europe in 2014 in order to expand his racing horizons - an experience that taught him a great deal and led to the realization that his future lay much closer to home, back in the U.S.
O'Ward made the jump to cars in 2013, competing in the Formula LATAM F2000 Series in Mexico, the Formula Renault 1.6 NEC Junior series in Europe and earning a victory in the Pacific F2000 series in the U.S. O'Ward then headed to French Formula 4 and finished seventh despite missing the first two events, winning the penultimate race at Circuit Paul Ricard and earning 10 top-five finishes in 15 races. He moved to the Mazda Road to Indy in 2015, finishing a close second to teammate Aaron Telitz in the 2016 Pro Mazda title chase. Switching gears in 2017, O'Ward and teammate James French took on the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and handily won the Prototype Challenge class championship.
But in 2018, it all came together for O'Ward. Joining Andretti Autosport, he battled teammate Colton Herta for the championship title and the scholarship that would guarantee him three Verizon IndyCar Series races, including the Indianapolis 500. O'Ward won the title with a record-setting nine pole positions, nine victories and podium finishes in 13 of 17 races. O'Ward will graduate to INDYCAR alongside Herta at Harding Steinbrenner Racing, a merger of Mike Harding's Harding Racing, and Herta's Andretti-Steinbrenner Racing.