Aside from Nico Rosberg, Damon Hill is the only son of a Formula One World Champion to win the title himself. The challenges he had to overcome make his success all the more admirable.
When Damon was fifteen, his father was killed in a light aircraft crash and the family was left in drastically reduced financial circumstances. Damon worked as a motorbike courier to finance his education and started his racing career on two wheels, winning the 350cc Clubman’s Cup at Brands Hatch.
Damon made his Formula One debut for the then impoverished Brabham team while he was working as a test driver with Williams. After an inauspicious start, he took the first of his 22 victories, at the Hungarian Grand Prix, for Williams the following year. His controversial rivalry with Michael Schumacher, both on and off the track, provided rich fodder for the motor racing press throughout the mid-nineties. When the two collided at the Australian Grand Prix, Schumacher snatched his first title by a single point. Two years later, after another Schumacher victory and a runner-up placing, Damon took eight victories and eventually the world championship.
In 1999 Damon retired from the sport, after 122 races. In retirement Damon has continued to be involved with cars and motorsport. He took on the role of President of the British Racing Drivers’ Club, a role he continued until August 2011. He presided over the securing of a 17-year contract for Silverstone to hold Formula One races.
He has also regularly appeared in the British media and on Sky Sports coverage of the F1 Championships.
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