Biography

Passionate about motor sport since his childhood, Simon Jean-Joseph has realized his dream of becoming a professional driver. Twice European Rally Champion, this eternal Ambassador of Martinique and the Caribbean has earned the recognition of his peers who elected him as the Martinique Sportsman of the twentieth century.

After racing his very first rallies driving a borrowed car, he bought a Peugeot 309 which allowed him to accumulate victories in Caribbean rallies. In 1993, it was time for Simon to cross the Atlantic: from his very first debuts on the Criterium des Cevennes, Simon demonstrated a very spectacular style and made amazing times. He was then integrated within the Equipe de France FFSA “Espoirs”. Unfortunately, because of a lack of budget, he had to return to the West Indies in 1995. He was not discouraged and tried again in 1997.

This come back was successful: Simon won his first national title. Amateurs French Champion, driving a Subaru Impreza Group A, he then went on to the « big » French Championship. In 1998, challenging the official Citroen team, he won three victories scratch – always with his Subaru prepared by CILT Sport – and he missed the title by a hair.

These performances were noticed by Ford which offered Simon to drive a Focus WRC for four rounds of the 1999 World Championship. The car was not reliable but nevertheless it was an unforgettable experience for Simon. In 2000, he drove for Subaru on two rounds of the World Championship and realized his first best times at top level. In parallel, the program of his season was completed by eight rounds of the French Championships on Tarmac and Gravel. As he wanted to continue a WRC season, Simon arranged a program in order to drive a private Peugeot 206 WRC from the Kronos team. The 2001 season allowed him to gain experience while signing good performances.

The year 2002 marked the beginning of a new challenge with the Renault Clio Super 1600. Simon was selected by Renault Sport to ensure the development of its new weapon. After a season as a private driver with the team Automeca, he became official driver starting in 2003. Within the Clio Team Oreca, he won the French Championship in 2003 and the European Championship in 2004. The Clio was also formidable in the World Championship in which Simon won many class victories. Simon continued his collaboration with Renault until the end of the 2006 season.

Meanwhile Simon gained his first experience in rally-raid. He participated in his first two Dakar (2005 and 2006) on a Mercedes ML class T2. In 2007, he decided to continue with a more ambitious program and registered a two-wheel drive buggy Fast & Speed. Alas, these first three attempts resulted in as many dropouts in Mauritania.

For the 2007 season, Simon and his faithful co-driver, Jack Boyère, received the support of Citroen Sport, which offered them to drive a C2 Super 1600. After 2004, the crew won the European title again. This collaboration continued in 2008 as part of a European program to promote the new C2-R2 Max. Injured in a boating accident, Simon was forced to stop his sporting career during the summer.

Having since worked as Head of the customers’ competition department for Citroën Racing and Peugeot Sport, Simon is now engaged in new projects.