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Successful in karting, Olivier Couvreur made his car racing debut with Graff Racing’s Van Diemen in the 1989 French Formula Ford Championship and finished third. He remained with Jean-Philippe Grand’s team for his graduation to Formula Renault a year later and was fourth in that rookie season.
French Formula Renault Champion for the team in 1991, Couvreur’s debut in the 1992 Formula 3 series was hindered by the team’s choice of a Bowman BC2 chassis when Dallara or Ralt were more commonplace. He finished third on his debut at Lédenon to record his only podium of the year. Team-mate Jules Boullion won races and 13th in the championship was a major disappointment for Couvreur.
So he returned to Formula Renault for 1993 and won the European Championship with Synergie Racing’s Alpa FR93. A planned move to the FIA Formula 3000 Championship with the team in 1994 did not materialise. Couvreur raced in the Le Mans 24 Hours that year but the Alpa LM-Ford he shared with Nicolas Minassian and Patrick Bourdais retired in the night.