Many drivers past and present paid their respects as Jules was laid to rest, after succumbing to his injuries on Friday. I can’t even begin to imagine how devastated they must be, and my heart goes out to the family and all the drivers - those who never thought they would have to experience the passing of one of their own, and those who hoped and worked to try and ensure the horrors of Imola would remain in the past. And this weekend they will have to race.
Lotus driver Romain Grosjean, who was a close friend of Bianchi’s, greeted Felipe Massa, Nico Hulkenberg and Daniil Kvyat, as they arrived at the funeral service.
Jenson Button, Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg and four-times champion Alain Prost were also there.
Bianchi’s coffin was carried into the cathedral, with Vettel, Massa and Grosjean among the pallbearers, while his helmet was also taken into the service. Two large portraits of the driver hung outside.
Bianchi was the first F1 driver to have died as a result of injuries sustained at a grand prix weekend since Ayrton Senna in 1994.
The FIA, motorsport’s governing body, said the number 17 that Bianchi carried on his car would be retired.