Two years have passed since the Japanese grand prix that everyone will remember for all the wrong reasons, that is of course the awful accident that Jules Bianchi suffered. Some say he was a future world champion, well in this article we will take a look back at a promising career that was stopped far to soon.
Jules started in motorsport as early as 3 years old, when he started karting and this was facilitated by his father who actually owned his own karting track.
After being successful in karting he started his single seater career in the French Formula Renault 2.0 series for SG Formula, where he finished the year as champion claiming five wins in the process. Whilst competing in the French series he also raced a select few races in the Eurocup where he bagged one pole position and one fastest lap in the three races he competed in.
In late 2007 Jules signed for ART Grand Prix to compete in the Formula 3 Euro Series. In 2008 Bianchi won the Masters of Formula 3 race at Zolder along with finishing third in his first season in the Forumla 3 Euro Series.
He continued to compete in the F3 Euro Series in 2009 heading the ART driving line up along side rookie team-mates Valtteri Bottas, Esteban Gutiérrez and Adrien Tambay. Through out the season Jules had eight wins to his name winning the title with a round to spare. Even though the title was wrapped up he added his name to the F3 greats by securing a ninth win at the final round at Hockenheim.
During the 2008 season he also made a one off appearance in the Formula Renault 3.5 series at Monaco.
Following his success in the F3 series he stepped up to GP2. Starting off in the Asia series and then graduating to a full GP2 campaign in 2010. He suffered a heavy crash in Hungary however recovered in time to compete in the remaining rounds. Following his debut season he stayed with the ART team for 2011, he starred in the opening two rounds of the season holding off Roman Grosjean to claim victory in the feature race and fourth in the sprint race. He eventually finished the series in third behind Grosjean and Luca Filippi.
Following his third place in GP2 he swapped to the ever competitive Formula Renault 3.5 series for Tech 1 Racing in 2012 following his one off appearance in the series back in 2009. Following a season long battle Jules missed out on the title to Robin Frijns in the final round of the championship.
After testing roles with Ferrari and Force India during his junior formula career Jules was signed to the Ferrari Driver Academy. In 2013 he was announced that he would compete in Formula 1 with Marussia following Luiz Razia’s contract being cancelled due to sponsorship issues. He qualified for his first grand prix 19th ahead of team mate Max Chilton. His famous flying starts continued when he got passed Pastor Maldonado and Daniel Riccardo on the first lap eventually finishing in 15th place.
After a successful first season it was announced that Jules would again race for the Marussia team in 2014. After a difficult start to the season not being classified in Australia. However he defied the odds and scored his and the teams first ever points in Formula 1 finishing ninth in the Monaco grand prix. This points finished confirmed everyone’s beliefs that he was ready to step up to the Ferrari seat following looming departure of Fernando Alonso. Out of the nine races Jules and Chilton competed in without retiring in the season he was the quicker driver in eight of them. However this was short lived following a serious accident at Suzuka that put end to his season and sadly his career.
He will go down in history as a world champion that never was.