Marlon Stockinger almost missed out on Lotus Junior Driver program

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by Patrick Everett Tadeo | May 6, 2013

\"TopGear.com.ph

Marlon Stockinger is now enjoying his association with the Lotus F1 team; the Manila Speed Show with the Formula 1 outfit held just this past weekend is proof of that. But did you know that Marlon might not have been where he is right now if a friend of his father didn’t insist that the elder Stockinger speak to a \"friend of a friend\"?

\"You know how it is when people say to you, \'Hey, I know someone who\'s this and that\' and things don\'t turn out as planned,\" Tom Stockinger told TopGear.com.ph. \"So, when a friend said that he knows someone from a Formula 1 team, I first brushed it off. But he kept insisting and insisting, so one day I said, \'Okay, I\'ll meet with him.\'\"

As it turns out, the friend that Tom Stockinger\'s friend knew was Martin Reiss, the Lotus F1 Team’s business development chief. Reiss then arranged for Tom to meet with Lotus F1 Team boss Eric Boullier. The meeting apparently bore fruit as Boullier agreed to talk privately with Marlon. So, at one of the European races in the 2011 Formula 1 season, Boullier and Marlon met and talked for over an hour. At the end of the meeting, without seeing a single one of Marlon\'s races in the GP3 Series--the same series where he won a race in Monaco in 2012--Boullier told Tom that he liked Marlon, paving the younger Stockinger\'s way into the Lotus F1 Junior Team.

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It\'s safe to say then that if Tom didn\'t take the opportunity to talk to Reiss, Marlon might not have planted one foot in the door of Formula 1.

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