Date of Birth: 4 March 1972
Marital status: Married to Sophie, 2 children
Points Score: 17
Number of GP: 91
Pole Positions: 0
First GP: 1994 (Interlagos)
Best Result: 3rd
Current Team: Minardi
||Formula 3 and Formula Atlantic|
||Formula 1 (Benetton), 10th with 10 points.|
||Formula 1 (Simtek).|
||Formula 1 (Arrows), 9th with 1 point.|
||Formula 1 (Tyrrell).|
||Formula 1 (Stewart).|
||Formula 1 (Arrows), 12th with 5 points.|
||Formula 1 (Arrows), 18th with 1 point.|
Jos began his racing career at the age of eight
like many other Formula One drivers have, in the world of Karts. In 1984 at the
age of twelve, he won his first championship, the Dutch junior championship, an
event he repeated two years later. It was 1989 that saw his most successful
season, winning a large number of international races including several European
After seven successful years in the Karting series, 1992 saw Jos
make his way into Formula Opel Lotus. Racing in the Benelux championship he
rapidly became known as the man to watch, only once failing to score points due
to an accident. Apart from that one time, he stole the show winning every time.
Not only did he take the Benelux Championship that year, but also joined forces
with Martijn Koene to win the Opel Lotus Nations Cup. He was elected the N.A.V.
Dutch driver of the year in 1992 and was promised a Formula One test by Ken
Tyrrell if he could win the F3 championship the following year.
to race in the German Championship for the WTS team of Willy Weber in 1993 he
won a total of eight victories that secured him the championship and at the end
of the season, Jos received the invitation to test a Formula One car for the
Arrows team. He was a wanted man in the eyes of the F1 teams, testing a McLaren
at Silverstone and Eddie Jordan had also expressed his interest in the Dutchman.
But, instead of signing a contract to drive in the 1994 season with any of the
before mentioned teams, Jos opted to sign with Benetton.
offered him a multi-year contract and for the first year he was to be their test
driver, but when JJ Lehto crashed heavily during a test at Silverstone and was
unable to start in the first few races of the season, as test driver, Jos was
the obvious replacement. In only two years from the start of his first major
race, Jos was thrown into the role of partnering Michael Schumacher.
debut race was as spectacular as it was memorable. While attempting to avoid the
troubled car of Martin Brundle, he made contact with the Jordan of Eddie Irvine
and the crash that ensued saw four cars forced into retirement. Irvine was
handed a three-race ban for the incident and while JJ Lehto returned to the team
two races later, he was again sidelined, leaving the door open for Jos from the
French GP onwards.
The German GP in that same year saw Jos once again
involved in a spectacular incident, only this time it wasn't on the track,
instead it was in the pits. When he came in for his first pit stop the
refuelling equipment was malfunctioning which caused the accidental spillage of
a few litres of fuel onto the red hot Benetton. The car was engulfed in flames
but luckily, the Dutchman was able to escape from the car uninjured. In total he
competed in ten races and finished up 10th overall with 10 points. Overall it
was a very difficult season for the entire Benetton team.
In 1995 he
drove with Simtek-Ford, competing in only four races while also retaining his
role as test driver for the Benetton team. His decline from the limelight
continued as he signed to drive for Arrows in 96, scoring only one point for the
entire season, but 97 was even worse, when, after switching to Tyrrell, he
failed to score even that one solitary finish in the top six.
came in 1998 after Ken Tyrrell sold the team to Craig Pollock. Wanting a driver
that carried more sponsorship, Pollock hired Ricardo Rosset, leaving Jos high
and dry. He was back to test driving for the Benetton team, until mid season,
when Jackie Stewart was dissatisfied with Danish driver, Jan Magnussen, and
hired Jos to replace him from the French Grand Prix.
Left without a
drive in 1999, Jos took up test duties for Honda, however this didn't pan out
they way it was hoped when Harvey Postlewaite died half way through the program
and the Japanese company opted to supply a team (BAR and then adding Jordan as
well) instead of building their own car. Jos then returned to drive for the
Arrows team once again, partnering Spanish driver, Pedro de la Rosa in the 2000
season. He had some strong drives throughout the year, however he finished 12th
overall with only five points. Continuing on in 2001, Jos clocked up a
remarkable record for overtaking. At the start of almost every race, he would
put the power down and pass a remarkable amount of his rivals. Sadly, he was
unable to capitalize on it too much and as 2002 was dawning, the team broke his
contract and replaced him with Heinz-Harald Frentzen.
action over the dismissal was consolation to a degree, however he was forced to
watch the action unfold from the sidelines once again. Now, after months of
speculation and hope, he has finally announced a deal to race with Minardi Ford
in 2003, a move his fans will be hoping reignites his racing career once and for