Onofre Marimon (1923-1954) was a racing driver from Argentina who participated in twelve Formula One Grand Prix events between 1951 and 1954, scoring two podiums. Unfortunately, he lost life in an accident during qualifying for the 1954 German Grand Prix at Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Born in December 1923 in Zarate, Onofre Marimon started his racing career in the late 1940s. He raced in different competitions in Argentina, making his international debut in 1951. That year, he raced Le Mans 24 Hours and made one start in the Formula 1 World Championship.
Debut at Le Mans and Formula 1 in the same week
In his Le Mans debut in June 1951, Marimon was driving the #7 Talbot-Lago T26GS for Henri Louveau, sharing a car with compatriot Jose Froilan Gonzalez. They retired after 128 laps with a broken radiator.
A week later, while he was still in France, Marimon made a Formula 1 debut in the French Grand Prix at Reims-Gueux circuit. He was driving the #50 Maserati 4CLT for Scuderia Milano. He was the 15th-fastest qualifier and retired from a race after just two laps with a broken engine.
Onofre Marimon in the #36 Maserati A6GCM at 1953 Swiss Grand Prix
Maserati factory driver in the 1953 F1 season
After spending 1952 in South America, Marimon returned to Europe in 1953 to serve as Maserati factory driver in the Formula 1 World Championship. He made a debut in a Maserati A6GCM at Spa-Francorchamps in June, finishing third in the Belgian Grand Prix, sharing a podium with Ferrari drivers Alberto Ascari and Luigi Villoresi.
In the rest of the season, Marimon finished ninth in the French Grand Prix and recorded four DNFs at Silverstone, Nürburgring Nordschleife, Bremgarten and Monza. With four points on his account, he was 11th in the 1953 championship standings. Marimon raced also in some non-championship F1 races, finishing best in the second place at Modena Grand Prix.
Outside Formula 1, Marimon participated in several famous sports car races but without any success. In a fact, he recorded DNFs in all races – Mille Miglia, 24 Hours of Le Mans and 1000 km of Nürburgring.
Onofre Marimon at the wheel of, Maserati 250F in 1954
One more F1 podium at Silverstone
In 1954, Marimon continued to drive for Maserati in Formula 1. His new car was a Maserati 250F and he recorded eights starts in that car, four in the championship and four in non-championship events.
He won Rome Grand Prix and scored his second podium in the championship, finishing third in the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Onofre Marimon recorded eleven starts in Formula 1 World Championship
The first fatal victim in F1 World Championship
In the sixth round of the championship, at Nürburgring Nordschleife, Marimon's success story came to a premature end. Unfortunately, he became the first fatal victim of Formula 1 Grand Prix races (not counting Indy 500) since the inauguration of the championship.
Marimon lost life in a crash during qualifying practice for the German Grand Prix at Nürburgring Nordschleife while attempting to improve his qualifying time. Previously, he set the 8th-fastest time, twenty-one second behind the fastest qualifier and eventual race winner Juan Manuel Fangio.