Thierry Marc Boutsen, born on 13 July 1957 in Brussels, is a former French-speaking Belgian racing driver, having won several Formula 1 and endurance races.
Thierry Boutsen made his Formula 1 debut with the British team Arrows in 1983. He followed a clear progression: first Grand Prix in 1983, first points in 1984 and first podium in 1985. In 1989, some Belgian Formula 1 fans saw in him a new Jacky Ickx and dreamed of finally having a world champion in the discipline. Following Nigel Mansell’s departure for Ferrari, he was entrusted with the Williams-Renault FW 12. Boutsen claimed two victories. 1990 started very badly with a violent crash that handicapped him all season long. However, he came on top in pole position in Hungary. At the end of the season, he was replaced by Mansell.
I am just as much an entrepeneur as I was an F1 driver
After his career in Formula 1, Thierry Boutsen still exercised his driving skills in endurance racing for Peugeot (2nd in the 1993 Le Mans 24 Hours), Porsche (3rd in the 1994 Le Mans 24 Hours and 2nd in 1996) and Toyota. After a terrible accident, which occurred at nearly 300 km/h during the 1999 Le Mans 24 Hours, at the wheel of a Toyota GT-One, he decided to put an end to his career.
Did you know?
Here he launched his own company, Boutsen Aviation, which operates in the field of business aviation. He founded the company in 1997 together with his wife Daniela and since then has been successfully developing it.