F1 community pays tribute at Bianchi funeral
The motorsport world came out in force to pay their final respects to Jules Bianchi who was laid to rest following a funeral in his native Nice.
The Marussia Formula 1 driver died last Saturday nine months after suffering severe head injuries, in an horrific crash at the Japanese Grand Prix.
A collection of the current F1 grid attended the funeral at Sainte Reparate Cathedral, Nice with four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel, Romain Grosjean, Felipe Massa and Ferrari test driver Jean-Eric Vergne among the pall bearers.
Reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Daniel Ricciardo, Jenson Button, Valtteri Bottas, Daniil Kvyat, Pastor Maldonado, Marcus Ericsson, Adrian Sutil, Roberto Merhi and Bianchi’s former team-mate Max Chilton were also present.
The ceremony was attended by the FIA president Jean Todt, four-time F1 world champion Alain Prost, GPDA president Alex Wurz and senior Marussia team members John Booth and Graeme Lowdon.
Hundreds of mourners gathered outside the front of the cathedral to listen to the broadcast of the service.
As a mark of respect, the FIA announced yesterday that it will retire the number 17 Bianchi carried during the 2014 season.