Formula 1 | Jean-Pierre Jabouille, the first winner of Renault F1, has died
Jean-Pierre Jabouille, the French driver who won Renault F1’s first victory in 1979, died today at the age of 80.
From 1975 to 1981, he competed in 55 Formula One Grands Prix, scoring two wins and two podiums for 21 championship points. He also took six pole positions.
The entire editorial staff of Nextgen-Auto.com is deeply saddened to learn of this news and extend our deepest condolences to his family, loved ones and friends.
A reliable car is what Jean-Pierre Jabouille will miss in Formula 1. This does not prevent him from being one of the best French pilots.
Jean-Pierre took part in his first major car race in 1966 at Monza, a distance of 1000 km. The following year we find him behind the wheel of Matra in Formula 3, where he takes fourth place in the French championship. In 1968, he competed in several sports car races, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans (an event he ran thirteen times). In F3, he finished second in the championship in 1968, third in 1969 and second again in 1971. In 1970 and 1971, he took part in the French rounds of the F2 European Championship, and Paud climbed to the second step of the podium. In 1971.
In 1972, he competed in the European F2 Championship and won the podium at Mantorp Park in Sweden. After a disappointing 1973 season, it was in 1974 that he won his first race at Hockenheim. It should be noted that he was third twice in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1973 and 1974.
Also entered F1 for the first time in 1974. He works for Iso, then Surtees, but fails to qualify. In 1975 in F2 he won the race, but in F1 he was recruited by Tyrrell for the French Grand Prix. Qualifying for twenty-first position, he finished the race in twelfth place.
In 1976, Jean-Pierre won the F2 European Championship with three victories.
In 1977, Jean-Pierre returned to F1 in a turbocharged Renault RS01. Jean-Pierre participated in the development of this project from the beginning. The beginnings will be difficult, the machine is not reliable, it will become a “palace teapot” (yellow teapot) for the British. He participated in his first full season in 1978, but the car was often abandoned due to engine failure. Jean-Pierre still manages to rank fourth in the US.
In 1979 he managed to take the pole position in Kyalami. During the French Grand Prix, Jean-Pierre took his first victory in F1, the first victory for a turbo engine. But that performance would be somewhat clouded by a memorable duel in the final laps between René Arnoux’s other Renault and Gilles Villeneuve’s Ferrari. Jean-Pierre gets two more poles but doesn’t finish either race. In 1980, he had no more luck, qualifying just twice, including the Austrian Grand Prix, where he took his second victory. He was a victim of an accident in Canada where he broke his leg. The following year he returned with a Ligier, without success in three races without a stop in F1.
After a stint with the Ligier team as technical director, Jabouille resumed his racing career in the French supertouring championship. Associated with Peugeot, he was chosen by Jean Todt as the main driver of the Peugeot 905 program from 1990. After a podium finish at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June 1993, he succeeded Jean Todt (going to Ferrari) at the helm of Peugeot Sport. He is particularly responsible for preparing the arrival of the Sochaux constructor in Formula 1. But two years later, and after Peugeot’s mixed start in the queen’s discipline (break with McLaren, unconvincing partnership with Jordan), they replaced him.
He founded the JMB Racing team with Jean-Michel Bourechet before retiring after titles in the Porsche Supercup and FIA Sportscar.
In 2010, Jean-Pierre Jabouille participated as a technical consultant in Quentin Dupieux’s film “Rubber”.
In 2013, it sponsored and participated in the historic Creusekistan rally, which brought together cars over 35 years old.