You can’t imagine it now though there was a time a lot of drivers tested in the Formula One. Or teams tested in between races to test new aerodynamics or new engines. Or just to cash extra money by letting unknown drivers, who will never arrive, experience the Formula 1.
As many of these drivers are long forgotten, and there isn’t a real overview of the test drivers, its all bits and pieces. It though well why not? Here are the drivers who tested with a F1 car in 1995.
Mild Seven Benetton Renault
Benetton the team to beat in 1995. They appeared with the B195 on the grid With Michael Schumacher and Johnny Herbert as their drivers’ duo. In 1995 the team would be powered by Renault like Williams. The team would eventually win the drivers and team’s championship. While Benetton was the team to beat a lot of drivers tested for the team.
Michael Schumacher: Tested with the Benetton B195 several times in pre-season testing.
Johnny Herbert: Tested with the Benetton B195 several times in pre-season testing.
Jos Verstappen: Was the official test driver for the Benetton team in 1995. Verstappen was placed by Simtek so he could build up more experience.
Kenny Bräck: Sources say that Kenny did not test for the Benetton team. However, he did test with the Benetton B195 during the summer.
Emmanuel Collard: Tested twice in an afternoon at Lurcy-Levis with the Benetton B195. The reason is probably for the sponsors he brought with him.
Gerhard Berger: For 1996 Berger would be one of the drivers for the team. Berger tested around November/December with the Benetton B195 at Estoril.
Jean Alesi: For 1996 Alesi would be the other driver for the Benetton team. Tested with the Benetton B195 at Estoril, eventually crashing the car.
Allan McNish: Is said that he tested with the B195.
Nokia Tyrrell Yamaha
After a decent season in 1994 with even a podium in Spain, the team’s future seemed to be bright. In 1995 the team’s main sponsor was Nokia which guaranteed them more or less with a constant flow of finance. The team appeared with their new challenger 023 powered by the Yamaha V10 3.0 V10 engine. Ukyo Katayama and Mika Salo were the drivers for the team. While Tarquini would replace Katayama for one race.
Ukyo Katayama: Tested with the Tyrrell 023.
Mika Salo: Tested with the Tyrrell 023.
Garbriele Tarquini: Tested with the Tyrrell 023 at Jerez in early season. During the season he tested a couple of times more.
Pedro Lamy: Tested with the Tyrrell 023 at Estoril.
Rothmans Williams Renault
The previous season was for Williams a terrible one. With the dead of Ayrton Senna at Imola and the investigations that came with it the team was tired. However, the team was ready to fight for the titles in 1995. With Damon Hill and David Coulthard as their drivers, their line up was even stronger than that of Benetton. The team appeared with the FW17 and later in the season with the FW17B. Powered by the Renault engine.
Damon Hill: Tested with the Williams FW16B, FW17 and the FW17B.
David Coulthard: Tested with the Williams FW16B, FW17 and the FW17B.
Jean-Christophe Boullion: Tested with the FW16B and the FW17 at Estoril.
Alan Menu: Tested with the Williams FW17 at Silverstone.
Guy Smith: Tested with the Williams FW17 at Silverstone.
Jacques Villeneuve: Tested a couple of times with the FW17 at Silverstone, Monza and Estoril.
Marlboro McLaren Mercedes
McLaren was on its way back in 1995, the team acquired the Mercedes engines and with Nigel Mansell and Mika Häkkinen they had a pretty strong drivers duo. We all know what happened with Mansell who did not fit the McLaren seat. Eventually he would only race two races that season before retiring from Formula One. Eventually Mark Blundell would replace Nigel. Jan Magnussen replaced Mika for one race as well. McLaren appeared with the MP4/10 and during the season, they kept on developing the car. As well the MP4/10B as the MP4/10C.
Nigel Mansell: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10 at Estoril in March before McLaren made a widener tube for Mansell.
Mika Häkkinen: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10, McLaren MP4/10B and the MP4/10C.
Mark Blundell: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10, McLarehn MP10/B and the MP4/10C.
Jan Magnussen: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10B.
Ralph Firman: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10 at Jerez for winning the McLaren Autosport BRDC Award in 1993. Later in the season he would test also with the McLaren in Silverstone.
David Coulthard: Tested with the McLaren MP10/B at the end of the season, the McLaren was applied with Marlboro as Coulthard was still under contract for Williams.
Jamie Davies: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10 at Jerez.
Dario Franchitti: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10 at Jerez for winning the McLaren Autosport BRDC Award in 1992.
Bernd Schneider: Tested on the 5th of December 1995 with the McLaren MP4/10B at Jerez.
Alain Prost: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10B at Silverstone.
Jonny Kane: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10B probably at Silverstone.
Martin Hines: Tested with the McLaren MP4/10B at Silverstone.
Footwork was one of these teams that regularly scored points in the Formula One, and appeared with slim designs. The FA16 was a similar design. The FA16 was powered with the Hart V8 engine. Footwork is probably best known for their block livery they used during the seasons. Taki Inoue drove all the races for the team, best known for his accident with the medical car, while Gianni Morbidelli drove most of the races. While Massimiliano Papis drove a couple of races instead of Morbidelli.
Gianni Morbidelli: Tested with the Footwork FA16.
Taki Inoue: Tested with the Footwork FA16.
Massimiliano Papis: Tested with the Footwork FA16.
Pedro Lamy: Tested with the Footwork FA16 at Jerez and Silverstone.
Jos Verstappen: Some sources say that Jos Verstappen tested with the Footwork FA16.
MTV Simtek Ford
Simtek a decent team that could accomplish so much more in 1995 than that amazing Grand Prix at Brazil. Could if there was more funding. The Simtek S951 was in base an evolution if the BMW S192 concept model. Powered by the Ford V8 engine. The team disappeared from the grid after the Monaco Grand Prix.
Domenico Schiattarella: Tested with the Simtek S951.
Jos Verstappen: Tested with the Simtek S951.
Total Jordan Peugeot
In 1995 Jordan would show the Formula One that they would become a big team. With the 195 powered by the Peugeot V10 engine with Barrichello and Irvine as their drivers they had a solid package. A couple of drivers tested for the team during the season.
Rubens Barrichello: Tested with the Jordan 195.
Eddie Irvine: Tested with the Jordan 195.
Emmanuel Collard: Tested with the Jordan 195 in December at Estoril.
Fabrizio de Simone: Tested with the Jordan 195 in October at Estoril and at Silverstone in November.
Pacific Team Lotus
Pacific Grand Prix and Team Lotus merged for 1995, to keep the name team Lotus in the Formula One. The team had a permanent funding problem which resulted in a lot of drivers coming and going. The team appeared with the PR02, still based on the Reynard concept from a couple of years before. Powered by the Ford V8 and almost no updates the team was doomed to the back of the field. Andrea Montermini drove all the races for the team. While Bertrand Gachot, Giovanni Lavaggi and Jean-Denis Délétraz shared car number 16.
Andrea Montermini: Tested the Pacific PR02.
Bertrand Gachot: Tested with the Pacific PR02.
Giovanni Lavaggi: To get known with the car Lavaggi tested with the PR02 before he would appear with the team on the grid.
Jean-Denis Délétraz: Same story as Lavaggi. Tested with the car to get the feeling with it.
Katsumi Yamamoto: Katsumi has an interesting story. He was to be one of the driver for the season. He tested with the PR02. However, due to the lack of experience he did not receive the needed super licence.
Paul Belmondo: It is said that Paul Belmondo did test with the Pacific PR02 as well. He was one of the drivers in 1994 for the team.
Oliver Gavin: It is said that Gavin teste also with the Pacific PR02. He did test with the PR01 a year before. It is unsure if he did test the PR02 as well.
Larrousse Ford / Larrousse Junior F1
On the 24th of March 1995 the FIA published a entry list for the 1995 season. On that list was also the Larrousse team. At that time it was unsure if the team would appear on the grid. The team started working on the Larrousse LH95 already in 1994. Though the team failed to find enough funding and saw no other option than to close the gates. Stories I wrote about it early can be read here and here.
The LH95 was to be powered by the Ford V8 engine and Christophe Bouchut and Éric Bernard were the drivers.
Christophe Bouchut: Was to test with Larrousse in February.
Éric Bernard: Was to test with Larrousse in February.
Parmalat Forti Ford
Forti was one of the new contenders for 1995. The team appeared with the slim looking FG01 on the grid .Powered by the Ford V8 engine. Sadly the car was too bulky and heavy and there was not enough funding to develop the car. The car had the best paint job on the grid. A yellow tube and green rims. Pedro Diniz and Roberto Moreno were the drivers for the team.
Pedro Diniz: Tested with the Forti FG01.
Roberto Moreno: Tested with the Forti FG01.
Giovanni Lavaggi: Drove with the Forti FG01 during the Bologna F1 sprint in 1995. Some rumours stated that Lavaggi was to race for Forti in 1996.
Vittorio Zoboli: Drove also with the Forti FG01 during the Bologona F1 sprint in 1995.
Jarosław Wierczuk: Tested with the Forti FG01 at Magione.
Hideki Noda: Probably tested with the FG01 before his super license was refused.
Minardi Scuderia Italia
The small Italian team was and still is loved by many Formula One fans. In 1995 the team appeared on the grid with the beautiful M195. In base, like the other Minardi’s, the car was good. Sadly due to financial struggles the team was unable to properly develop the car. If they did they probably scored more point during the season. The M195 was powered by the Ford V8 engine. Luca Badoer drove all the races that season while Pierluigi Martini drove the first nine races before he was replaced by Pedro Lamy for the rest of the races.
Luca Badoer: Tested with the Minardi M195.
Pierluigi Martini: Tested with the Minardi M195.
Pedro Lamy: Tested with the Minardi M195.
Giancarlo Fisichella: Some sources state thar Fisichella tested with Minardi in 1995.
Thomas Biagi: Tested with the Minardi M195.
Danilo Rossi: Tested with the Minardi M195.
Tarso Marques: Is said to have tested with the Minardi M195. This could also be in 1996.
Ligier Gitanes Blondes
From zero points a couple of years before to a sub-topper in 1995. That’s what Ligier became in the mid-90s. The team appeared with the JS41 on the grid, which had striking resemblance to the Benetton B195. Not that weird if you know that Flavio Briatore partially owned the Ligier team. The JS41 was powerd by the Mugen-Honda V10 engine. Olivier Panis drove all the races for the team. While Aguri Suzuki and Martin Brundle drove car number 25.
Aguri Suzuki: Tested with the Ligier JS41.
Martin Brundle: Tested with the Ligier JS41.
Olivier Panis: Tested with the Ligier JS41.
Frank Lagorce: Tested with the Ligier JS41 at Magny-Cours.
Derek Daly: Tested with the Ligier JS41 at Magny-Cours to test a new Mugen-Honda V10 engine.
Jeremie Dufour: Tested with the Ligier JS41 at Mugello. Ligier tested there a couple of young drivers. He only recorded a few laps.
Emmanuel Collard: Tested with the Ligier JS41 at Mugello. Ligier tested there a couple of young drivers.
Vincenzo Sospiri: Tested with the Ligier JS41 at Mugello. Ligier tested there a couple of young drivers.
Jos Verstappen: Was to test with the Ligier JS41 in the first week of October. However, the test did not happen due to a lack of Mugen-Honda engines.
Emmanuel Clérico: Is said to have tested with the Ligier JS41.
The most historical team in the Formula One. In 1995 they were the only team to still use the V12 engine. The team appeared on the grid with the 412T2. With Jean Alesi and Gerhard Berger as a strong drivers duo. Sadly the reliability of the car was questionable at some points. Interesting is the fact that a lot of drivers tested for the Scuderia.
Jean Alesi: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2.
Gerhard Berger: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2.
Eddie Irvine: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2 on the 12th of December 1995 at Estoril. In 1996 Irvine would become one of the drivers of the Scuderia.
Michael Schumacher: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2 on the 12th of December 1995 at Estoril. Same reason as Irvine.
Gianni Morbidelli: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2.
Pierluigi Martini: Is said to have tested with the Ferrari 412T2.
Giancarlo Fisichella: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2 at Fiorano.
Luca Badoer: Tested with the Ferrari 412T1 in pre-season, later in the season with the 412T2.
Nicola Larini: Tested with the Ferrari 412T2 which was fitted with the new Ferrari V10 engine the 3rh of October 1995.
RedBull Sauber Ford
In 1995 Sauber strikes a deal with Sauber to be their main sponsor. Since their debut the team has been a solid point scorer. For 1995 Sauber appeared with the C14 on the grid powered by the Ford-Zetec V8 engine. Heinz-Harald Frentzen drove all the races for the team. While Karl Wendlinger did the first few races, before he had his massive shunt. Jean-Christophe Boullion drove 10 races for the team before Wendlinger returned.
Heinz-Harald Frentzen: Tested with the Sauber C14.
Karl Wendlinger: Tested with the Sauber C14.
Jean-Christophe Boullion: Tested with the Sauber C14.
Norberto Fontana: Tested with the Sauber C14. He did mostly some aero testing.
Lola – Ford T95/30
In 1993 Lola produced their last Formula One car the T93/30 for the Scuderia Italia. Which was far from a good car. The team failed to score decent results during the season. Which would be the last season for the Italian Team. In 1994 Eric Broadley worked on a new F1 car, the plans were to enter the Formula One in 1995 with their own team. The T95/30 was a mix of 1994 and 1995 regulations which made it highly unlikely to debut at all. As well Lola had not the financial backing to appear with a full team on the grid. The car was designed by Julian Cooper and Chris Saunders.
Allan McNish: Tested with the Lola – Ford T95/30 at Silverstone.
Dams – Ford GD01
In 1994 Dams started working on their own Formula One team. The team was to debut in 1995 with the GD01. The car was designed in collaboration with Reynard. Rob Arnott and Claude Galopin penned the GD01. The development of the car went slow in 1994 due to a lack of financial backing. What didn’t help either were the new regulations the FIA announced due to the horrible week at Imola in 1994. Nevertheless begin 1995 the GD01 was completed and was ready to be tested on the track. At Circuit de la Sarthe the Dams was unveiled. While their plans were for real, nobody believed the team would appear on the grid.
Jan Lammers: Tested with the Dams GD01 at Paul Richard.
Érik Comas: Tested with the Dams GD01 at Paul Richard.
Emmanuel Collard: Was to test with the Dams GD01, though never happened.
AGS – Ford JH25B
1995 and the AGS – Ford JH25B was tested? Yes indeed it was! The car was tested by Brazilian driver Gustavo Pasetto. The complete story inclusive photos of the test can be read and seen here.
What the hack is Formula Medicinia some medical Formula One car? No not at all. The Formula Medici is the first F1 simulator. Nicola Larini was the first driver to race on this F1 simulator.