The Ultimate Journeymen

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Inspired by the exchanges in my Button/Brawn Contract thread I would like you to consider who for you have been the ultimate journeymen in F1.

Dictionary.com describes the negative use of Journeyman as "any experienced, competent but routine worker or performer"

For me a journeyman in F1 is one who spends their entire career in middling teams getting the job done, occasionally showing the odd flash of talent but never really achieveing. So, to kick you off I offer:

Andrea deCesaris - a 14 year career, 214 Grand Prix (208 starts), 59 points, no wins, 1 pole, 1 fastest lap. The largest number of Grand Prix contested without a win.

and my own personal hero

Jean-Pierre Jarier - a 12 year career, 143 Grand Prix (135 starts), 31.5 points, no wins, 3 poles, 3 fastest laps.

One other question which crossed my mind, can a driver become a journeyman after achieving great things? For example could the latter years of Graham Hill's career, or for that matter Damon's, earn them the journeyman tag? To quote Neil Peart - Sadder still to watch it die than never to have known it.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
I've been giving this some thought and I think Rene Arnoux is a name that could easily fit the bill here. In his career in F1 he raced for 5 teams but spent the longest time with Renault and Ligier. This brought 7 wins and 18 polls between 1978 and 1989.

Faimied for his duel with Gilles Villeneuve at Dijion in 1979 he was at his best when battleing Prost at Renault. On his day he was as quick if not quicker than Le Proffeseur which lead to several fall outs between the two.

He also has spells with Martini racing, Durex (couldn't resist) Surtees and Ferrari. I reckon his other claim to fame was being the driver that most people would name check when doing a Murry Walker impression.
 

Muddytalker

Points Scorer
Was going to suggest Piercarlo Ghinzani or Jans Lammers, but I don't think they even did enough to reach journeyman stage...

The Brundell brothers?
Phillippe Alliot?
I think Eddie Cheever would have to be in there too, along with Stefan Johansson.
 

Speshal

World Champion
Valued Member
Ooooh controversial but I'm going with Rubens Gonçalves Barrichello - 280 starts and 11 wins - 2 of which have come this year.
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff Member
Does a few wins exclude a driver from being a "journeyman"?
If not then you could make a case for Giancarlo Fisichella.

First Race:	10 March 1996
First Win: 06 April 2003
Last Race: 13 September 2009
Last Win: 19 March 2006

WDC Titles: 0
Wins: 3
Podiums: 19
Poles: 4
Points: 275
Fastest Laps: 2

Entries: 227
Starts: 225
DNS: 1
DNQ: 1

Finishes: 158
RET: 66
DSQ: 1
Of course it all needs to be taken in context and how he performed against his team mates.
On the face of it though he has some solid results but nothing that makes him stand out from the crowd.
 

Muddytalker

Points Scorer
I'd agree with that, particularly as he only gained 2 wins in 2 years of the WC winning Renault, and yet still very quick on his day. For some reason, though he seemed to have only one day a year.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
This might not be massively popular but what about Johnny Herbert? I think Johnny is a great bloke and probably should have achieved more in his career but with stats of 7 teams, 165 races (161 starts), 3 wins and 98 points he has journeyman potential for me.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
Without a doubt JH qualifies as a Journeyman. He was one of those drivers for whom the whole grid was really pleased when he one his first race. Hired as one of Michael Schumachers "cannon fodder" team mates he proved that he could handle himself well in a top car.

I've often wondered (and I'm sure he has as well!!) what would have happenend had he not smashed his feet up in 1989. In another way going to Lotus at a time when they were on their final slide to oblivion in 91 didn't do his career any good, especially as Mika Hakkinen had the measure of him. Mika scored as many points in 2 seasons at Lotus as Johnny scored in 4. Having said that, it was thanks to Lotus or specifically Peter Collins at Lotus giving Johnny another chance after his horrific accident when no other teams would take a look that gave Johnny the career he had.

He always comes across as one of the genuine and nice blokes in F1.
 

Muddytalker

Points Scorer
FB said:
This might not be massively popular but what about Johnny Herbert? I think Johnny is a great bloke and probably should have achieved more in his career but with stats of 7 teams, 165 races (161 starts), 3 wins and 98 points he has journeyman potential for me.
Yeah, he crossed my mind too. Should there be a distinction between journeyman and unfulfilled potential? Or are they just two sides of the same coin, depending if you're a fan or not.

(I didn't mention Johnny in the end as I felt his longstanding injuries just about gave him the benefit of the doubt).

Any takers for Roberto Moreno? And if René is in, then I'm afraid Michele Alboreto (RIP) can join him too.
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff Member
Muddytalker said:
Should there be a distinction between journeyman and unfulfilled potential? Or are they just two sides of the same coin, depending if you're a fan or not.
That's the crux of the matter for me.

If they never got the opportunity by not driving in a decent car (or not being allowed to drive a decent car due to "team orders" ;) ) then personally I think it's a bit unfair to label them as a journeyman.
If however they were in cars which their team mate was regularly able to score decent points and wins with and they didn't then that's fair enough.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
I suppose, as has been proven this season, in the right car many drivers on the grid can perform so there are many who could fall into the unfulfilled potential category. The days of dodgy Rent-a-drivers such as Hector Rebaque, Huub Rothengatter and Riccardo Zunino are long gone (apart from Nakajima maybe) so maybe the general standard has improved.

One who crossed my mind who could be journeyman or unfulfilled potential is Elio de Angelis. If you look at his stats when driving against Mansell at Lotus he was more than his equal, yet his career started to slide before his unfortunate death and Mansell went on to win the title in probably the most astonish racing car (when compared to the rest of the grid) ever built - the Williams FW14B.

Could we put Riccardo Patrese in as a journeyman? Never threatened Mansell in the same car, or any of his other teams mates come to that.

Poor old Roberto Moreno, he was always in the wrong place at the wrong time. Wasn't he kicked out of Benetton to make way for Michael Schumacher? And what did he ever achieve, eh? :dunno:
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
FB said:
Poor old Roberto Moreno, he was always in the wrong place at the wrong time. Wasn't he kicked out of Benetton to make way for Michael Schumacher? And what did he ever achieve, eh? :dunno:
He qualified an Andrea Moda for a Grand Prix...
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
How about Derek Warwick?

He always seemed to be so close to doing great things but never quite got the right car at the right time.

He started in a Toleman and towards the end of 83 was a regular in the points. Then he went to Renault which must have seemed to be a great move at the time but it all went south fairly quickly. Senna blocked his move to Lotus in 86 (which in a back handed complement) so he ended up jobless until the tragic death of Elio De Angelis at Brabham. Apparently Bernie gave the job to Derek because he was the only driver who didn't call him and ask for it. Unfortunatly the great days of Gordan Murry and Brabham were gone and that car was a lemon as well. Then it was off to Arrows where he still turned in some decent performances. He finally got to drive a Lotus in 1990 but that car was a heap of junk and he watched his team mate Martin Donelly almost die in a horrific crash. After a year out he had a final year with Footwork where he picked up a couple of points and that was that.
 
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