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Ricardo Rosset

27th July 1968 (Age 52)
Sao Paulo
Most recent race (in database):

This wealthy Brazilian endured an unhappy Formula 1 career during the 1990s – making 27 Grand Prix starts but never finishing higher than eighth. A race winner in the junior formulae, Ricardo Rosset returned to Brazil with his reputation in tatters.

Early racing career

A contemporary of Rubens Barrichello, his family wealth came from the lingerie and swimwear business they ran. He started in karts before making his motor racing debut in Brazilian Formula Ford during 1991. Buoyed by initial success, Rosset switched to the following year’s Formula Opel Euroseries with PTM Motorsport. The team had finished as runners-up a year before but Rosset suffered as PTM concentrated its efforts on team-mate Bruno Aguiar.

Undeterred, he graduated to British Formula 3 in 1993 driving an Alan Docking Racing Dallara F393-Mugen. He made progress under the experienced Australian’s watchful eye and results improved as he calmed his ragged style. He finished second at Silverstone as he came sixth equal in the points. He switched to Team AJS for 1994 and was a regular in the top six with victory at Snetterton and fifth in the championship testament to his progress.

Ever ambitious, Rosset spent 1995 in Formula 3000 with Super Nova Racing’s Reynard 95D-Cosworth. It was his most impressive season in the sport with the Brazilian displaying previously unseen speed and consistently. He won the opening round at Silverstone from pole position and was successful again at Enna-Pergusa. That year’s surprise package finished as runner-up behind team-mate Vincenzo Sospiri.

Formula 1 with Footwork and Lola

His 1996 move to F1 with Tom Walkinshaw’s recently acquired Footwork-Hart team was eased by Brazilian sponsorship. It was a transitional year for the team and Rosset struggled. He signed for the ill-feted new Mastercard Lola concern in 1997 but the season was over almost before it began with both cars failing to qualify in Australia and not seen again.

Disappointing final season with Tyrrell

Rosset joined Tyrrell in 1998, the team having just been bought by British American Racing in preparation for its F1 debut. Ken Tyrrell had preferred to keep Jos Verstappen rather than accept the Brazilian’s sponsorship dollars and immediately left the team. Rosset crashed too often and seldom finished. He failed to qualify for Tyrrell’s final race in Japan and quietly slipped out of F1 – part of the sad final act of a once great team.

He retired from racing to focus on his clothing business but Rosset recently returned in national GTs – winning the 2010 Brazilian GT3 Cup with a Porsche 997.

Championship seasons

Season Name Starts Poles Podiums Wins Position Points
1998 F1 World Championship
Tyrrell Ford
11 (5) 0 0 0
0% win rate
1997 F1 World Championship
Mastercard Lola F1 Team
0 (2) 0 0 0 0
1996 F1 World Championship
Footwork Hart
16 0 0 0
0% win rate
1995 FIA International F3000 Championship
Super Nova Racing
8 1 3 2
25% win rate
2nd 29
1994 British F3 Championship
Team AJS
1 1 1 1 5th 132
1993 British F3 Championship 6th 18