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Damon Hill

From Academic Kids

Template:Former F1 driver

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D_hill.jpg
Damon Hill driving for the Williams Formula One team in Montreal in 1995

Damon Graham Devereux Hill, born in London on September 17, 1960, is the son of the late twice Formula One World Champion Graham Hill. Damon Hill came late to Formula One after an early career in motorcycle racing, not making his single-seater debut until 1984. He slowly graduated through Formula Three and Formula 3000, showing occasional flashes of speed. In 1992 he broke into Grand Prix racing with the struggling Brabham team, managing to qualify for 2 mid-season Grands Prix. Hill was also the test driver for the dominant Williams-Renault team, and when Nigel Mansell left to drive IndyCars in 1993, Hill was promoted to the race team alongside Alain Prost. After some bad luck, Hill won three successive races in his first full season of F1, in so doing, he became the first second generation member of a Grand Prix winning family.

In 1994 he was team mate to Ayrton Senna, and became their lead driver after Senna's death. Hill was denied the world championship in the last race because of a controversial collision with Michael Schumacher. Although Schumacher had dominated the early part of the season, Hill had come back into contention for the title after Schumacher had been disqualified from the British Grand Prix and banned for two races for overtaking during the parade lap and ignoring a black flag. Four of Hill's six race wins in 1994 came in races where Schumacher was either disqualified or serving a ban.

Hill came a distant second to Schumacher for the title in 1995, but in 1996 the Williams car was clearly the quickest of the teams, and Hill went on to win the title ahead of team-mate Jacques Villeneuve (in his first year in Formula One), becoming the first son of a Formula One champion to win the championship himself. He was dropped by Williams for the following season.

He raced for Arrows, once coming close to a win in a very uncompetitive car (Hungarian GP in 1997), and then for two seasons for Jordan, taking their first (double) win (the memorable Belgian GP in 1998).

Hill was the BBC Sports Personality of the Year twice, in 1994 and 1996, one of only three people to achieve that feat.

He retired from Formula One after a disappointing 1999 season. His career included twenty-two grand prix wins for Williams and Jordan. He is now involved in business, including a BMW dealership.

Damon is married to Georgie, and they have 4 children: Oliver, Joshua, Tabitha & Rosie. Oliver was born with Down's Syndrome and Damon and Georgie are both active supporters of related charities.

External links

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