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Adrian Sutil

Formula 1 driver

Adrian Sutil
Credit: Sutton
Vital statistics for Adrian Sutil
BirthplaceStarnberg, West Germany
Born11 January 1983
F1 debutAustralian Grand Prix, 2007
Driver number99

Adrian Sutil spent the majority of his F1 career at the Force India team, in its various guises, but for 2014, he made the break for new ground and moved to midfield rivals Sauber. After a year away from the sport in 2012, the German driver was relishing his return, but found the season difficult. With zero points from the season, Sauber decided to replace both their drivers for 2015, leaving Sutil without a race seat.

F1 biography

One of the surprising facts about Adrian Sutil is that he is an excellent piano player, but he chose to concentrate on a career in motorsport rather than music. He karted in his teens and then joined some of the Swiss and Austrian national categories. In 2003, he moved up to Formula BMW and then moved on to Formula 3 Euroseries, where he met and impressed future boss Colin Kolles.

Rather than continue in the European circuit, Sutil moved to Japan, and raced the All-Japan Formula Three series in 2006. He also signed to the Midland F1 team as a test driver, of which Kolles was team boss. The team was bought out by Dutch sportscar manufacturer Spyker, but they retained Sutil for the 2007 season, promoting him to one of the race seats. The season held mixed results for Sutil, but once again, he had impressed enough to be re-signed for the following year, despite the team being sold from under him.

Now labelled as Force India, Sutil spent four years racing for the Silverstone-based outfit with a handful of good results but the majority of midfield finishes due to the pace of the car. At the end of the 2011 season, Sutil was left without a race seat when Force India decided against renewing his contract. Part of the problem was that Sutil was facing trial for grievous bodily harm against Genii Capital boss Eric Lux, during a nightclub incident after the Chinese Grand Prix in 2011. Sutil was found guilty of the charge, receiving a fine and a suspended sentence.

Just a couple of weeks before the 2013 season was due to get underway, Sutil participated in a test shootout for the race seat at Force India, and he secured the place to line up alongside Paul di Resta. The results continued to be mixed, and at the end of the year, Sutil was confirmed to be moving to Sauber for 2014.

He was a consistent racer for the team, but finished the year without points due to the underperforming car. Sauber opted to overhaul their driver line-up for 2015, bringing in two new faces and leaving Sutil and teammate Gutiérrez without a race drive. Sutil joined the Williams team as reserve driver, as the team realised they needed an experienced driver to race in case either of their main racers were ill or injured. This never came to pass, however, leaving Sutil on the outskirts once again.

Learn more about Adrian Sutil with the Pocket F1 Handbook.