Jules Bianchi

#17 | Jules Bianchi | Marussia F1 Team

Date of Birth: 03/08/1989 | Nationality: French | Twitter: @Jules_Bianchi


Born into a motorsport family, French racer Bianchi enjoyed success in French single seater championships before stepping up to the Formula Three Euroseries with crack squad ART in 2008. He finished a respectable third place in the championship and won it in his second season. He also added an F3 Masters victory to his resume.

His natural career progression took him to GP2 for 2010 but while he impressed with his speed, he was held back by his inconsistency and a tendency to get involved in unnecessary scrapes. The situation reared its head during the middle of his 2011 season when he was a lowly 15th in the championship. He fought back with a win at Silverstone and ended the season in third place, as he did in 2010.

For 2012 he switched from GP2 to the Formula Renault 3.5 Series and finished in second place in the championship in controversial fashion, having clashed with eventual champion Robin Frijns during the final race of the year.

Bianchi has long been associated with Ferrari and tested for the team as early as 2009, appearing at several young driver tests for the Scuderia.

In 2012 he retained his Ferrari links but also joined Force India as their test and reserve driver, competing in nine practice sessions across the year. He was set to maintain that role after losing to Adrian Sutil in a shootout for a race seat. But with just two days of pre-season testing remaining, Marussia ousted Luiz Razia after the Brazilian's sponsors failed to pay and called in Bianchi to fill the void.

Bianchi regularly led the charge for Marussia across the first part of the season and clinched the 13th place in Malaysia that eventually netted his team the potentially lucrative 10th place in the constructors' championship. Bianchi saw off team-mate Max Chilton both in qualifying and the races, albeit he regressed behind the Caterham drivers once their car improved. Nonetheless, Bianchi sufficiently impressed the Formula 1 community and will retain his seat for 2014.