- Sep 26, 2010
The FIA have announced that car number 17, which Jules Bianchi raced with during the 2014 Formula One season, is to be retired for all future Formula One seasons.
The young Frenchman, who succumbed to injuries in the early hours on Saturday morning that he sustained in a horrific crash at the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix, competed in 15 Grand Prix sporting the number 17, including his memorable 9th placed points finish in Monaco.
A statement from Jean Todt and the FIA read that, "as F1 car numbers are now personally chosen by each driver, the FIA believes it to be an appropriate gesture to retire Jules Bianchi's number 17." This marks the first time in the sport's history that a car number has been retired from use.
Meanwhile, shortly before the FIA's announcement, Luca di Montezemolo revealed that Bianchi had been earmarked for a future Ferrari drive. The former Ferrari team principle was quoted as saying that "Bianchi was one of us, he was a member of the Ferrari family and was the racing driver we had chosen for the future, once the collaboration with Kimi Raikkonen had come to an end."
Bianchi will laid to rest in his hometown of Nice on Tuesday.