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Biography

SEASON INFORMATION
13/01/2018

 

Biography

 

Marc Gene is younger bother of Jordi Gene who competed in the British F3 Championship against drivers such as Rubens Barrichello, David Coulthard and Olivier Panis. Jordi also spent time as official test driver for Benetton.

As is often the case, Marc Gene's motorsport career began in Karts, the Spanish youngster finishing runner-up in the Catalan Championship at the age of 13.

The following year Marc was Spanish Kart Champion (National Class) in addition to winning the Catalan title.

In 1990, at the age of 16, he became the youngest driver to win the Spanish Senior Kart title yet was unable to make his mark in the World Championships.

From Karts he progressed to Formula Ford, going on to finish runner-up in 1993 European Formula Ford Championship and Formula Ford World Cup.

In '94 and '95 Marc contested the British F3 Championship, being awarded the 'rookie of the year' title in '94, and by 1997 he was racing in the International F3000 Championship.

In 1998 won the Open Fortuna Nissan Championship with 6 wins and 3 poles, enough to secure a drive with the Minardi F1 team 1999and 2000. At the 1999 European GP Marc scored his first World Championship point, he Italian outfit's only point of the season, and therefore worth a considerable sum in prize money. The following season he was unlucky not to score points in Australia and Austria.

In 2001 he was appointed official test driver for the WilliamsF1 team a role that he retained until late 2004.

In September 2003 following Ralf Schumacher's accident during testing at Monza, Marc replaced the German in the Italian GP finishing a fine fifth.

At the launch of the radical WilliamsF1 FW26 Marc revealed that prior to Monza 2003 he'd been speaking to several teams about a drive in 2004 and that following his performance there were even more offers on the table. However, after giving the matter many hours of consideration the Spaniard opted to remain where he was.

Following Ralf Schumacher's horrific accident at Indianapolis, Marc stepped up to the race seat for the second successive year. Sadly, he was unable to replicate his 2004 performance, and after two races (France and Britain) he was replaced by second tester, Antonio Pizzonia.

Subsequently, the relationship between the Spaniard and the Grove outfit deteriorated to the point that he left, and in late November was snapped up by Ferrari. He was an integral part of the Italian outfit's test team in 2005 and was retained for 2006, 2007 and 2008.

In 2009 he was once again retained by Ferrari, however, the new rules, which strictly limited testing, meant we saw the Spaniard concentrating on activities other than F1 for the Italian company.

Following, Felipe Massa's accident during qualifying for the Hungarian GP and Michael Schumacher's inability (cough!) to deputise for the Brazilian, some were surprised that fellow tester Luca Badoer got the nod rather than Marc, after all, the Spaniard's last F1 race was in 2004 compared to the Italian's in 1999.

However, Marc didn't spend 2009 with his hands in his pockets kicking his heels, along with Alex Wurz and David Brabham, the Spaniard won the Le Mans 24-hours for Peugeot.

One of several test drivers on Ferrari's book for 2010, in truth Marc saw no F1 action, not even in the simulator. However, the Spaniard did continue in Sports Cars, taking a win in the Sebring 12 hours and coming cruelly close to a back-to-back win at Le Mans.

With Jules Bianchi named Ferrari's sole test and reserve driver for 2011, Marc, who attended the pre-season media event Wroom, will no doubt find himself confined to other duties at Maranello.

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