Former Minardi F1 driver Tuero retires from racing

Ex-F1 driver Esteban Tuero, who contested a full-time campaign with Minardi back in 1998, has retired from motorsport aged 38.

Former Minardi F1 driver Tuero retires from racing
Esteban Tuero, Minardi M198 Ford plough into the gravel on the first corner
Esteban Tuero, Minardi M198 Ford
#37 ACA Argentina Ferrari 550 Maranello: Gaston Mazzacane, Esteban Tuero
Esteban Tuero

At the time of his F1 debut in the 1998 Australian Grand Prix, Tuero, then aged 19 years and 320 days, had been the third-youngest F1 driver in history behind Mike Thackwell and Ricardo Rodriguez. He has since been demoted to sixth in the list by Fernando Alonso, Jaime Alguersuari and Max Verstappen.

The highlight of his first and only season in F1 was an eighth-place finish in the San Marino GP, Tuero's Minardi only reaching the chequered flag on three other occasions over the 16-race season.

During the following winter, when the Argentine had his contract ready to sign to stay with Minardi for 1999, he suddenly decided to leave F1 and returned to racing in his home country.

Back in Argentina, Tuero raced in TC2000, Turismo Carretera, Top Race and Turismo Nacional, where he won the Clase 3 championship in 2008. That year, he also took part in the FIA GT championship in Europe.

Tuero will make his final race appearance as a professional driver this weekend in the last round of the Turismo Nacional season in Viedma, Argentina.

"At 38 years old, with 30 years racing behind me, I can only be grateful for all the people that have accompanied me during my career," Tuero wrote on Twitter.

"Grateful for the mechanics, sponsors, sporting directors, car makers, series directors, colleagues, journalists and friends - and, most of all, my family for the unconditional support from the first moment."

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