Former F1 driver Franck Lagorce is celebrating his 42nd birthday today. Lagorce competed in two Grands Prix with the Ligier team in 1994.
Born in the French town of L’Haÿ-les-Roses, Lagorce competed in French Formula Ford for three seasons, before graduating to the national Formula Renault championship in 1990, where he finished as runner-up.
Lagorce graduated to French Formula 3 in 1991, and won the title the following year, before moving on to Formula 3000, where he won four races and finished runner-up in the 1994 championship to Jean-Christophe Boullion by two points.
It was his form and his French connections that saw him as Ligier’s test driver in the 1994 season, and joined the outfit for the final two races of the 1994 season as a replacement for Johnny Herbert, who had been shuffled from Ligier to Benetton.
Lagorce crashed out after just 10 laps when he collided with Pierluigi Martini’s Minardi in the torrential downpour at Suzuka, but finished 11th at the following race in Australia.
It was to be his last F1 race appearance, although he continued as Ligier’s test driver for 1995 before moving on to the ill-fated Forti operation as its test driver in 1996.
[Original image via F1 Nostalgia]