OJ Inspiration: François Cevert, talented pilot

There are pilots who, despite being “cute”, have talent. François had a lot of both.

Before James Hunt, Formula 1 had François Cevert in its ranks, a true Playboy of the category. His life was directed towards music-a great pianist capable of writing and composing great musical pieces. However, destiny had another path prepared for him.

Jean Pierre Beltoise, her sister's husband, gave her the fever for speed. Already at the age of 16, François was driving a borrowed Kart through the streets of Paris, swearing to his sister that one day he would be a Formula 1 world champion.

In 1969, François returned to Formula 2. That same year the category shared the stage on more than one occasion with its older sister, Formula 1. It was during one of these races where Cevert put up a tough fight with Jackie Stewart, reigning champion . of the maximum at that time and main pilot of the Tyrell team.

Result? Cevert, recommended by Jackie Stewart, signed for Tyrell and spent three years learning alongside this unrivaled teacher.

The final party was going to be at the Watkins Glen circuit located in New York City . That day Jackie Stewart would reach his 100 grand prix and would retire forever and make way for Cevert as the future promise of Formula 1 of the moment.

Jackie would let Cevert win… “It's like I passed the torch to my little brother…” he said.

But on October 6, tragedy struck. In the pre-race qualifiers, François Cevert went out onto the track and attacked hard to achieve the best time, aware that pole position could help him achieve victory...

The afternoon was ending at the New York circuit. The qualifiers were coming to an end and the last drivers retired to their bases to rest and eat something. Suddenly a fierce knock is heard that breaks the calm of the afternoon: “It's Cevert, shit it's Cevert”… “It's serious, very serious.”

Stewart rushed to the scene of the accident. “I arrived and I was paralyzed by horror, there was smoke and steam everywhere… and there, still trapped by the seat belt, “was my teammate, my protégé, my friend, my little brother… I was dead” .

The gods who gave him so many gifts had prepared a singular destiny for François Cervera on that October 7, 1973. The following year, the Apollo with deep blue eyes would have turned thirty years old.

François, as a source of inspiration for us – hence our collection of shirts with his name ( https://oldjeffrey.com/search?q=cevert ) – always repeated the same phrase:

“I enjoy every moment of my life, it's almost incredible. There are very few things I have to do that I don't like. At the moment, I am the happiest man in the world."