Bertrand Gachot

Bertrand Gachot

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Bertrand Gachot

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Bertrand Gachot (born 23 December 1962 in Luxembourg) is a French-Belgian former racing driver.


Gachot is the son of a French European Commission official. He began karting at the age of 15. In 1983 he attended Winfield School, a well-known racing-driving school in France. After this, he focused on his racing career, competing first in the Formula Ford 1600 series. By 1986, he had won the British Formula Ford championship.

In 1987, Gachot joined the British Formula 3 series, finishing second in the championship for the West Surrey Racing team. In 1988, he switched to the Formula 3000 series, but met some success. In 1989, he entered the storied world of Formula One, driving for the newly-formed Onyx team. Although his performances were promising, after making statements in the press which raised the ire of his erratic team boss, Gachot lost his drive before the season's end. Instead, he switched in 1990 to the Subaru-powered Coloni team with little success.

In 1991, he joined the Jordan Grand Prix racing team, helping them to fifth in the constructor championship. However, his season was cut short by a two-month prison stint, received for spraying CS gas on a London taxicab driver after a traffic altercation (his race seat was filled temporarily by then-unknown Michael Schumacher, making his Formula One debut). When he was finally released from prison after two months, he had missed four Grands Prix (including his home Grand Prix in Belgium). The Jordan Grand Prix...
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