When Marussia driver Jules Bianchi sat down to be interviewed this past July for an episode of NBCSN’s “Off The Grid,” he was coming off his biggest moment to date in Formula One.
Back in May, Bianchi, a member of Ferrari’s Driver Academy and a potential future pilot for the Scuderia, had delivered a fabulous drive in Monaco to finish ninth and give Marussia its first-ever World Championship points.
The result was a breakthrough for Marussia and for Bianchi, who had once regarded attaining a chance to race in F1 as almost impossible.
“I didn’t really think about [that] until I came to single-seater, because in go-karts, you’re so far away from Formula One that you – I could not even imagine that I would be a Formula One driver,” he said to NBCSN’s Will Buxton.
Bianchi persevered and eventually worked his way up the F1 ladder until reaching the top level – first as a tester for Ferrari and Force India, and then as a full-fledged racer for Marussia starting in 2013. There, Bianchi has shown enough potential to be regarded as a possible star in the years ahead.
But now, the Frenchman is in a battle for his life after his crash in Saturday night’s Japanese Grand Prix. The racing world hopes and prays for his recovery, and we certainly are doing the same.
You can watch an extended cut of Bianchi’s interview – an insightful look into his upbringing, his stellar run at Monaco, and his racing aspirations – in the clip above.