The veteran of 156 Grands Prix between 1994-2003 and three-time race-winner becomes the latest in a host of former race drivers – including the likes of Alain Prost, Tom Kristensen, Johnny Herbert, Alexander Wurz, Derek Warwick, Damon Hill and Emerson Fittipaldi – to be appointed as a guest steward as part of the FIA’s initiative to bring about greater transparency to the decision-making of on-track incidents.
Frentzen – who celebrated his 43rd birthday last month – was considered by many in his formative years to be quicker than his compatriot Michael Schumacher. However, his promise was never fully realised.
Three impressive seasons with Peter Sauber’s team saw Frentzen move to Williams, winning the 1997 San Marino Grand Prix in his first season with the team. A very public relationship breakdown with the team’s Technical Director, Patrick Head, saw Frentzen completely demoralised by the end of 1998, and he moved to the Jordan team for the 1999 season.
Finally in an environment where he felt he had greater respect, this season was his zenith, picking up two excellent wins in France and Monza, and posing a serious threat to the Drivers’ Championship battle that eventually fell to Mike Hakkinen. The 2000 season was a comparative disappointment, and his motivation flagged the following year, where he was fired from Jordan and lucky to find a vacancy at the Prost team.
A transfer to Arrows (pictured) yielded some excellent drives in the unreliable and underdeveloped A23, but a tally of just two points was scant reward, on top of the team collapsing mid-season. He switched back to Sauber for his swansong season in 2003, picking up a lucky podium at Indianapolis in the wet.
He switched to the DTM series in 2004, leaving at the end of 2006, and he also competed in the 2008 Le Mans 24 Hours race and the short-lived Speedcar Series.