The man, the legend, my childhood hero, Damon Hill is joining the SkySports F1 Team to provide expert analysis.
When I was 5 or 6 and a teacher would ask the class who our heroes were or who we wanted to be like when we were older, most girls would say like The Spice Girls or whoever else was in the charts then. My answer was always Damon Hill.
Since the age of 3, I have looked forward to a Sunday afternoon just so I could watch a collection of beautiful cars be driven at insane speeds by arguably some of the bravest and ballsiest men on the planet but I was absolutely obsessed with Damon Hill. My mom even made me a tshirt with his name on, it was impossible to get me to take it off.
I can’t really tell you why I loved Damon Hill so much at the time, other than he was exciting to watch. Maybe I was being patriotic too after hearing ‘Look the english guys winning’. My parents would sit me infront of the TV for a few hours on a Sunday afternoon and I’d barely move. I’ve been told that even at such a young age I knew exactly what was happening during a race, which means I probably got incredibly excited when Damon Hill was leading a race. So I think I’d like to take this opportunity to apologise to my parents for screaming and shouting in excitement.
As I’ve grown older I’ve seen him in documentaries and tv programmes and I’ve learnt that he’s not only a fantastic driver but that he’s pretty down to earth and a geniunely nice guy.
During his eight years in Formula 1, Damon Hill won one world championship, 1996 for Williams, and won 22 races. He also shared a record with Aryton Senna and Alain Prost for starting 16 races from the front row of the grid. A record we known was smashed by Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel who started 18 races on the front row in 2011.
Since leaving Formula 1 Damon has continued in to work in motorsport; founding a super car members club, owning a couple of car dealerships and most notably in 2006, he took over from Jackie Stewart as the President of the British Racing Drivers Club, a position which he stepped down from last year. We have him to thank for securing Silverstone’s place on the calendar for many years to come and for all the development to the circuit and to the venue, such as the new Silverstone Wing, which looks fantastic may I add.
If I were ever asked who I’d most like to meet it would be Damon Hill, I owe my love of Formula 1 to him. I wish I could have gone to the British Grand Prix when he was still racing.
Who’s your favourite Formula 1 driver and why?
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