Jules Bianchi is the driver all other racers are talking about for his natural ability, consistency and performances compared to Max Chilton this year. Any driver I have spoken to on the matter fails to brush Jules’ talent and potential aside.
In my opinion, there is no greater compliment.
We have all heard drivers shift blame or criticise a particular move either during an interview or on social media sites, but no such comments have ever been aimed towards Jules Bianchi, a man Ferrari have moulded for years.
When driving a Marussia, it can be difficult to impress, particularly when both yourself and your team mate are rookies – Jules Bianchi verses Timo Glock may have given a more accurate interpretation for us. However, Jules is getting the buzz and nods of approval at a similar rate to his GP2 and Formula Renault 3.5 days; he finished second in both series.
An impressive feat. It is no wonder he has a place on the Ferrari development scheme.
The dulcet tones of Alexander Rossi, during his brief stint as a Formula 1 pundit for the BBC in Canada, remarked simply that Jules is the driver of his generation most likely to become a champion one day. As rivals, competitors and both outstanding drivers in their own right, it did make me sit up and think.
I would like to take a moment to thank Marussia F1 for signing him in the first place; the 2013 grid just would not be the same without his innocent French grin which transforms into steely determination beneath his helmet. Regardless of whether you rate Luiz Razia, the termination of his contract was a sad affair however Jules has provided Marussia with some strong (relatively speaking) finishes to place them ahead of fierce rivals, Caterham.
Personally, I would like to see Jules Bianchi in a Force India next year. His money may help him claim a seat but his talent would prevent him from being labelled a villainous ‘pay driver’. His connections to the team are well known and his determination to claim Nico Hulkenberg’s seat over Adrian Sutil was admirable and almost jeopardised his chances of racing elsewhere.
Placing Jules Bianchi in a Force India make senses – his links to Ferrari will become of political importance in 2014 and he is one driver who could really help push Paul Di Resta to the next step of Formula 1 competition.
Allow me to put forward a theory (and only a theory it is). Let’s say, Kimi Raikkonen, as I expect he will, stays with Lotus and Felipe Massa’s ticking clock finally chimes for the last time – a seat alongside Fernando Alonso could become available. If Nico Hulkenberg, a driver who possesses a strut similar to Michael Schumacher’s, was to join Alonso until the Spaniard’s retirement, they would begin moulding a great young racer.
Upon Fernando Alonso’s retirement, whenever that may be, Ferrari could then show the worth of their investment in both Hulkenberg and Bianchi by providing a strong line up that is dynamic, fast-paced and highly regarded. Jules Bianchi would then be alongside an experienced driver who is familiar with the prancing horses.
Just a thought.
Simply put, Jules Bianchi deserves more than the Marussia seat he currently calls his own. Granted it may not come in the next year or two, but I seriously hope Formula 1 makes a sensible decision regarding his, and subsequently its own, future.
Jules Bianchi is one driver whose career is worth following.