Tarso Marques (born 19 January 1976) is a Brazilian racing driver. He competeraced in Formula 1 during the 1996, 1997 and 2001 seasons, all driving for the Minardi team.
After five years of Karting, Marques raced in Formula Chevrolet in his home country aged only 16, and he won the title at his first attempt. In 1993 he moved up to Formula Three Sudamericana and subsequently European Formula 3000, and became the youngest driver to win races at both levels. In 1996, he started racing for Minardi in Formula One.
In 1999, he moved stateside to drive in the American Champ Car ranks, and caught the eye of legendary team-owner Roger Penske, Penske asked him to fill in the 1999 season doing 6 races for the Team Penske, his best finish was 5th (Best result for the team in that season). In 2000, 2004, and 2005, he drove sporadically in that series for perennial minnows Dale Coyne Racing.
Marques returned to Formula 1 in 2001 season to race alongside future double World Champion Fernando Alonso in the Minardi team, newly purchased by Paul Stoddart. He finished the season ahead of the Spaniard but it was a difficult season for Marques, with the team’s financial difficulties not always allowing equal equipment for both drivers. Marques brought no money to the team and was employed under the provision that another driver with more sponsorship money could replace him at any point in the season, and that prospect was realised towards the end of the year, when Minardi replaced Marques with Alex Yoong with three races remaining. Marques welcomed the driver change as the extra finance would enable the team to progress, adding, “Yoong brought the sponsor for the team already two or three races ago so he should be in the car.”
His two ninth-place finishes remained Minardi’s best results of the season. Marques decided not to stay at Minardi anymore, although he had another two years of contract to complete.
Since his last Champ Car outing in 2005, Marques has being driving in the FIA GT ,BOSS GP, ENDURANCE BRASIL, TC2000 and Stock Car Brasil championships.
These Days Tarso is the Founder of TMC , the biggest Design Studio in South America which creates projects of Custom Cars, Motorcycles , Airplanes, Yachts and Architecture. With TMC he became six times World Champion of the Main and biggest Custom Bike Contest in the world.
Tarso is also the host of a TV Show On Globo TV in Brazil (Auto Esporte).