Former F1 driver Jamie Alguersuari today announced he would be retiring from all forms of car racing. The Spaniard, who is only 25 years old, became the youngest driver ever F1 driver in Formula One history in 2009, debuting in that year’s Hungarian Grand Prix at the age of 19 with Scuderia Toro Rosso.
The son of motorcycle racer Jamie Alguersuari Sr, he began his career in Formula Renault, finishing as the runner up for the championship the following year. He moved to Formula 3 in 2008, and beat current F1 driver Sergio Perez to take the championship title that year.
Halfway during his inaugural Formula 3.5 season, Alguersuari was noticed by Scuderia Toro Rosso, the junior team of Infiniti Red Bull Racing, and the then-teenager began racing for them concurrently with Formula 3.5. Initially employed as a reserve driver for the team, he took over full time when his predecessor, Sebastien Bourdais, left Toro Rosso.
The driver had a good run during the 2012 season, chalking up a total of 7 points finishes, 3 of which were on the trot. He ended that year winning an international karting event organised by Felipe Massa.
His successes that year were not enough to keep him in Formula One, however, and he would go on to be replaced at Toro Rosso by the now-successful Daniel Ricciardo. Subsequently, the driver announced he would not return to F1 at all, and participated in several karting events through the year. He has been dealing with what he described himself as “minor” health issues – the driver suffered a fainting spell at the Moscow ePrix this year, and was replaced for the rest of the season.
Asked if the retirement was related to his health issues, Alguersuari replied in the negative. The former driver is also a musician, and said the primary reason for his retirement was his disenchantment with the sport.
"I need a change," Alguersuari said during a press conference in Madrid. "I've lost my love for this girlfriend. I'm 25 and I've decided to start a new chapter."
In an interview to Red Bull in 2011, he said 'I’m a Formula One driver but I have another thing in my life, and that is music. It’s obviously quite strange to see a Formula One driver having another life but this is who I am. I’ve always said it’s important to follow your instincts: I love music and racing doesn’t interfere with that. I love to close the door and produce, compose, play music, listen to music. I couldn’t live without it, just as I couldn’t live without racing.'