Jean-Pierre Paoli


Jean-Pierre Paoli

In the late 1960s Jean-Pierre Paoli ran the Île de Bendor Glass Company, a small glassworks that was active until 1981. Situated on the Island of Bendor a small rocky island south of Bandol, a port between Marseilles and Toulon, the island had been purchased in 1950 by Paul Ricard, the man who created his own very successful style of pastis.

And it was to another one of Ricard's ventures that Jean-Pierre moved to next when he took on the role of director of the Circuit Paul Ricard. The track was built in 1969 at Le Castellet, near Marseille, financed by Paul Ricard who was looking for another challenge.

Jean-Pierre made his racing dbut in 1972 and turned out to be pretty good. Racing with Jacques Laffite and Claude Michy in the works Martini team, he finished third in his second race and ended up fourth in the series that was won Laffite.

For 1973 he moved up to French Formula 3 driving alongside Laffite with BP sponsored March BMW 742s with a best result of second at Mugello behind Patrick Depailler.

He continued to manage the Paul Ricard circuit until 1981 when he became the team manager at Ligier and when Guy Ligier sold up at the end of 1992, he stayed on to help Cyril de Rouvre. He finally left Ligier in May 1993 to set up a company to help drivers find sponsorship.

His career has also seen him appointed as Director General of Eurosport Television Limited, Director of International Development for the Canal + Group and Molotov a TV distribution platform.

His son Philippe raced briefly, winning the Volant Elf award at the Winfield School at Paul Ricard in 1981.


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