Rubens Barrichello – Longest Serving Driver




Rubens Barrichello

Rubens Barrichello

Williams’ Rubens Barrichello is the longest serving driver in history, with well over 300 Grand Prix starts to his name. He is a Brazilian formula one driver. He is currently racing for Williams F1. Barrichello has scored the fourth highest points total in Formula One history. Barrichello drove for Ferrari from 2000 to 2005, as Michael Schumacher’s teammate, enjoying considerable success including finishing as championship runner – up in 2002 and 2004. Schumacher’s retirement at the end of 2006 made Barrichello the most experienced driver on the grid, and at the 2008 Turkish Grand Prix he became the most experienced driver in F1 history. He became the first driver to reach 300 Grand Prix entries and 300 starts, doing so in 2010. He is also the incumbent chairman of the Grand Prix Drivers’ Association.

Rubens started career as a rookie driving for the team Jordan by the year 1993-96. And then he drove for Stewart in the next two successive years. After that he joined the team Ferrari in 2000 and drove it until 2005. In 2000, Barrichello achieved his first grand prix victory at the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim demonstrating why he is rated as one of the best wet weather drivers, when he and the team choose to stay on slicks when it was raining on part of the circuit. This risky call saw him leap-frog the McLarens who chose to pit for wet weather tires, thus earning him a well deserved and emotional victory, having started the race from 18th place on the grid. This was the longest any driver in Formula One history has waited for a maiden grand prix win. Barrichello had a consistent debut season for Ferrari, finishing most races on the podium, but was outscored by the other three reliable drivers: Michael Schumacher, Mika Häkkinen and David Coulthard. Barrichello finished the season ranked fourth after supporting Schumacher as he battled and defeated Häkkinen for the drivers’ championship and helping Ferrari wins the constructors’ championship.

Barrichello currently holds the fastest time by a Formula One driver around the Top Gear test track during the show’s Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car segment. His lap time of 1:44.3 put him ahead of The Stig by 0.1 seconds.

He also works with the team like Honda in 2006-08, and Brawn GP in 2009 and Williams in 2010. He has raced nearly 310 times and is still continuing with last appearance in 2011 Chinese Grand Prix. However in 1994, at the San Marino Grand Prix, Barrichello’s career nearly ended when he suffered a violent crash during Friday practice. His car hit the wall in Variante Bassa, turning him upside down. This accident knocked him unconscious and threatened his life, with his tongue blocking his airway. Quick action by officials ensured survival.

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