Neel Jani
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Neel Jani
Neel Jani
Neel Jani (2017).png
Jani in 2017
NationalitySwitzerland Swiss
Born (1983-12-08) 8 December 1983 (age 37)
Rorschach, Switzerland
FIA World Endurance Championship career
Debut season2011 (ILMC)
Current teamPorsche GT Team[1]
Previous series
1998-2000
2000
2001-2002
2003-2004
2005-2006
2005-2009
2007
2010
Karting
Formula Lista Junior
Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup
Formula Renault V6 Eurocup
GP2 Series
A1 Grand Prix
Champ Car World Series
Le Mans Series
24 Hours of Le Mans career
Years2009-2019
TeamsSpeedy Racing Team Sebah, Rebellion Racing, Porsche Team
Best finish1st (2016)
Class wins1

Neel Jani (born 8 December 1983)[2] is a Swiss professional Porsche factory driver.[3][4] His father is from India and his mother is German Swiss.[2]

He achieved his greatest success winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2016 after first joining Porsche's LMP1 programme for the 2014 season driving in the WEC.[5] Previously, Jani drove for A1 Team Switzerland in A1 Grand Prix, helping them win the 2007-2008 title and finishing runner-up in 2005-06 and 2008-09. He raced for PKV Racing in the North American Champ Car series in 2007. He is also a GP2 Series race-winner and former Formula One test driver.

He joined Formula E's Faraday Future Dragon Racing squad for the 2017/2018 season but left the team after one weekend. For the 2019-20 Formula E season, he returned with his home brand Porsche with teammate Andre Lotterer.

First steps

Born in Rorschach, Jani started his career in karting in 1998 where he stayed for two years before moving up to Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup in 2001. In the same year, he also raced some races in Italian Formula Renault. He stayed in both for 2002, again only racing part of the Italian Formula Renault season. In 2003, he moved to Formula Renault V6 Eurocup, driving for the Jenzer team. In that year, he finished second by only four points in the championship with Jenzer Motorsport. In 2004, he again raced in the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup but changed team, running with the French team DAMS, stating in the Swiss press, "This year, it is win or nothing."[] He finished fourth in the championship that year, while his old team, Jenzer Motorsport finished second with their rookie driver Ryan Sharp.

GP2

In 2005, he raced in the GP2 Series with Racing Engineering alongside Borja García who he generally outperformed. He won two races, at the Hungaroring and at Monza. He also managed to lead most of the Nürburgring race in a clearly slower car with some effective defensive driving.

In 2006, he replaced injured Nicolas Lapierre in the Silverstone and Magny-Cours races for English race team Arden. By doing this, he also secured his place in the record books, being the only person to ever drive in both GP2 and F1 on the same day.

A1 Grand Prix

He then raced in the new A1 Grand Prix series, representing his home nation with A1 Team Switzerland. In the inaugural season of A1GP, the team earned the silver medal for second place, with Jani consistently finishing on the podium, including a win at the Dubai Autodrome during the Sprint Race of the 2005-06 A1 Grand Prix of Nations, United Arab Emirates.

After leaving the first two rounds of the 2006-07 season to Sébastien Buemi, Jani would win another Sprint Race, during the 2006-07 A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Malaysia.

Jani drove all the races for Switzerland in the 2007-08 season, taking the championship with four wins and 168 points. The team finished second in the 2008-09 season, again with Jani ever-present.

Formula One

He was linked to a reserve F1 seat with the Sauber team. In 2004 however, he moved back to GP2 the following year. In December 2005 he was confirmed as Scuderia Toro Rosso's third driver, alongside race drivers Scott Speed and Vitantonio Liuzzi, a role he held throughout the 2006 season, before departing to pursue a Champ Car career. For the 2008 F1 season, Neel was linked with the test driving role at Red Bull Racing. As his father is from India, Jani was linked to the proposed Indian-backed buyout of BMW Sauber[6] but this did not succeed. In early 2010 he tested for Force India and was rumoured to be involved with the team in 2010. However Force India signed Mercedes driver Paul di Resta as their test and reserve driver.

Jani competing in a Lola B12/60 at the 2012 Petit Le Mans.

Champ Car

For 2007, Jani drove for the PKV Racing team in the Champ Car World Series.[7] He ended the series in ninth place with a total of 231 points. After choosing to focus on the 2007-2008 A1GP season rather than stay in ChampCar for 2008,[8] the series was absorbed by the IRL.

Sports car racing

In 2010, Jani became affiliated with Swiss privateer Rebellion Racing and teamed with Nicolas Prost to race a Lola-Judd LMP1 at the Le Mans Series and 24 Hours of Le Mans, finishing 2nd at Algarve and 5th at Silverstone. Also, he raced the second half of the FIA GT1 season for Matech in a Ford GT, finishing 7th in a championship race and 8th in other two.

Jani driving in the 2018 6 Hours of Silverstone.

Jani took up full-time WEC racing in 2012 with Rebellion, teaming with Prost and Nick Heidfeld for two seasons, before joining the Porsche works team in 2014 and winning his first LMP1 race at São Paulo, Brazil, finishing third overall in the championship. The 2015 season saw Jani take another win at Bahrain in addition to 5 runner-up spots; again he finished third in the championship.

Jani kicked off the 2016 WEC season with a win at Silverstone and a second place at Spa before inheriting the win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in dramatic fashion when Kazuki Nakajima's Toyota broke down in the lead with only one lap to go in the race.[9]

Return to single-seaters: Formula E

On 24 August 2017, it was announced that Jani would make his debut in FIA Formula E Championship in its fourth season at Faraday Future Dragon Racing with Jérôme d'Ambrosio as his team mate.[10] After two 18th place finishes at the season opener in Hong Kong, Jani abruptly quit the team focusing instead on his WEC commitments with Rebellion Racing.[11]

In December 2018, Porsche announced that Jani would return to the championship as part of their driver line-up for their maiden season.[12] He raced for Porsche with team mate Andre Lotterer till the end of the 2019-20 season, finishing twentieth on the standings.[13] For the 2020-21 Formula E Championship, he will be replaced by Pascal Wehrlein.

Personal life

Jani and his wife Lauren have a son.[14]

Career results

Complete A1 Grand Prix results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Complete GP2 Series results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Formula One

(key)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 WDC Points
2006 Scuderia Toro Rosso Toro Rosso STR1 Cosworth V10 BHR
TD
MAL
TD
AUS
TD
SMR
TD
EUR
TD
ESP
TD
MON
TD
GBR
TD
CAN
TD
USA
TD
FRA
TD
GER
TD
HUN
TD
TUR
TD
ITA
TD
CHN
TD
JPN
TD
BRA
TD
- -

American Open Wheel

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position, races in italics indicate fastest race lap)

Champ Car

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Rank Points
2007 PKV Racing LVG
10
LBH
7
HOU
15
POR
12
CLE
3
MTT
6
TOR
2
EDM
9
SJO
2
ROA
10
ZOL
8
ASN
5
SRF
8
MXC
9
9th 231

Complete 24 Hours of Le Mans results

Complete GT1 World Championship results

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 Pos Points
2010 Matech Competition Ford GT1 ABU
QR
ABU
CR
SIL
QR
SIL
CR
BRN
QR
BRN
CR
PRI
QR
PRI
CR
SPA
QR

20
SPA
CR

14
NÜR
QR

8
NÜR
CR

16
ALG
QR

20
ALG
CR

12
NAV
QR

4
NAV
CR

7
INT
QR

7
INT
CR

8
SAN
QR

17
SAN
CR

8
33rd 14

Complete Superleague Formula results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Operator 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Position Points
2010 Olympiacos CFP GU-Racing International SIL ASS MAG JAR NÜR ZOL BRH ADR POR ORD BEI+ NAV 4th 653
14 1 X
2011 Belgium - RSC Anderlecht Azerti Motorsport HOL BEL 5th 125
4 9 7 2 9 3

+ Non Championship round

Complete FIA World Endurance Championship results

Year Entrant Class Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Rank Points
2012 Rebellion Racing LMP1 Lola B12/60 Toyota RV8KLM 3.4 L V8 SEB
17
SPA
4
LMS
3
SIL
6
SÃO
4
BHR
4
FUJ
4
SHA
Ret
4th 86.5
2013 Rebellion Racing LMP1 Lola B12/60 Toyota RV8KLM 3.4 L V8 SIL
5
SPA
5
LMS
25
SÃO COA FUJ SHA BHR 16th 21
2014 Porsche Team LMP1 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche 2.0 L V4
(Hybrid)
SIL
Ret
SPA
4
LMS
5
COA
4
FUJ
4
SHA
3
BHR
2
SÃO
1
3rd 117
2015 Porsche Team LMP1 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche 2.0 L V4
(Hybrid)
SIL
2
SPA
2
LMS
5
NÜR
2
COA
12
FUJ
2
SHA
2
BHR
1
3rd 138.5
2016 Porsche Team LMP1 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche 2.0 L Turbo V4 (Hybrid) SIL
1
SPA
2
LMS
1
NÜR
4
MEX
4
COA
4
FUJ
5
SHA
4
BHR
6
1st 160
2017 Porsche LMP Team LMP1 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche 2.0 L Turbo V4 (Hybrid) SIL
3
SPA
4
LMS
Ret
NÜR
2
MEX
2
COA
2
FUJ
3
SHA
3
BHR
3
4th 129
2018-19 Rebellion Racing LMP1 Rebellion R13 Gibson GL458 4.5 L V8 SPA
DSQ
LMS
4
SIL
2
FUJ
3
SHA
4
SEB
Ret
SPA
5
LMS
4
5th 91
2021 Porsche GT Team LMGTE Pro Porsche 911 RSR-19 Porsche 4.2 L Flat-6 SPA
1
ALG
3
MNZ
1
LMS
2
BHR
BHR
2nd* 112*

* Season still in progress.

Complete WeatherTech SportsCar Championship results

Year Entrant Class Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Rank Points
2017 Rebellion Racing P Oreca 07 Gibson GK428 4.2 L V8 DAY
8
SEB
9
LBH COA DET WGL MOS ELK LGA PET 26th 45
2020 Porsche GT Team GTLM Porsche 911 RSR-19 Porsche 4.2 L Flat-6 DAY DAY SEB ELK VIR ATL MDO CLT PET LGA SEB
2
14th 32

Complete Formula E results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position; races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Chassis Powertrain 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Pos Points
2017-18 Dragon Racing Spark SRT01-e Penske EV-2 HKG
18
HKG
18
MRK SCL MEX PDE RME PAR BER ZUR NYC NYC 25th 0
2019-20 TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Spark SRT05e Porsche 99X Electric DIR
17
DIR
13
SCL
Ret
MEX
14
MRK
18
BER
11
BER
15
BER
Ret
BER
19
BER
6
BER
15
20th 8

References

  1. ^ Lloyd, Daniel (21 January 2021). "WEC Reveals 33-Car Season Entry for 2021". sportscar365.com. John Dagys Media. Retrieved 2021.
  2. ^ a b "About Neel". neel-jani.com. Retrieved 2014.
  3. ^ Abhishek Takle. "For Swiss-Gujarati Neel Jani, it Was action that mattered". The Economic Times. Retrieved 2015. Born in 1983 in Switzerland to a Swiss mother and an Indian father who has his roots in Gujarat, Jani caught the racing bug from his dad, an amateur racer himself.
  4. ^ Pradeep Vijayakar / V Narayan Swamy. "F1 beckons Neel Jani". times of india. Retrieved 2015. It is 20-year-old Neel Jani from Switzerland, who has test-driven for Stauber-Petronas. Neel was born to an Indian father, Mukesh, who hails from Gujarat. The father married a Swiss lady Elizabeth from Berne. The Janis own a chain of fast food places in Switzerland. One ran into Neel Jani at the launch of Formula Karting track at Andheri the other day. Since Sachin Tendulkar was around no one took notice of this other little fella sitting in a corner.
  5. ^ "Porsche confirms Neel Jani for 2014 LMP1 programme". Autosport. 24 June 2013. Retrieved 2014.
  6. ^ Neel Jani part of consortium bidding for BMW Sauber
  7. ^ Neel Jani joins PKV Racing
  8. ^ Jani Sees Better Future in A1GP Archived 2008-01-24 at the Wayback Machine, RACER Magazine & Autosport.com via SpeedTV.com, January 23, 2008
  9. ^ "Porsche claim dramatic Le Mans win as Toyota fails on final lap". Eurosport. 19 June 2016.
  10. ^ "Neel Jani joins Formula E with Faraday Future Dragon Racing". NBCSports.com. August 24, 2017.
  11. ^ "Jani leaves Dragon after single Formula E race weekend". Motorsport.com. January 3, 2018.
  12. ^ Klein, Jaime (December 14, 2018). "Porsche names Neel Jani as its first 2019/20 Formula E driver". Autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 2019.
  13. ^ "Porsche signs Wehrlein to replace Jani in Formula E line-up". autosport.com. Retrieved .
  14. ^ "Le Mans winner is the new World Champion". Winforce. Retrieved 2020.

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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