Rubens Barrichello: an inexhaustible enthusiasm
December 6, 2010 Personalities

Rubens Barrichello: an inexhaustible enthusiasm

The Brazilian driver has made his mark on car racing. On August 29, 2010, he became the first driver in history with more than 300 race starts. Here, a portrait of this remarkable man.

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Thirty-eight-year-old Rubens Barrichello holds a double record. In addition to the number of Grand Prix races he’s entered, he is also the only driver in history to have started more than 300 races. The Brazilian has no intention of stopping while he’s on a roll like this: “When I raced for the first time, I didn’t think I’d keep racing for such a long period. Now, I’m enjoying it more than I used to,” he said, beaming, during an interview on the BBC show Top Gear.

Maybe it’s this optimism that has allowed him to remain at the pinnacle of car racing for such a long time. Barrichello started car racing in 1993, making him one of the youngest drivers to make his entry into the signature car racing circuit.  In his first years as a driver for Stewart, Jordan and Ferrari, he rubbed shoulders with Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher, whom he joined as part of the Scuderia team.

Even though Barrichello’s celebration wasn’t exactly as he would have liked, because he had to pull out of the race due to a collision, the record is now firmly established. The count had been disputed earlier, because two Grand Prix races that he abandoned before the start had been included in his race start total. But there is no question that Barrichello is indisputably the driver with the most starts in the history of car racing. Audemars Piguet appreciates this longevity, and has collaborated with the athlete for many years. In 2008 a limited Royal Oak Offshore Rubens Barrichello was released, a sports watch celebrating the driver’s 257th Grand Prix, with ceramic elements evoking the sport of car racing.