World Champions

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Some drivers like Phil Hill and Denny Hulme hardly seemed to realise they had become World Champion Racing Drivers, according to the FIA points-scoring system. Others like Jack Brabham and John Surtees quietly got on with their business activities, smiling contentedly to themselves and satisfied with a “job well done”. Graham Hill did his best to live up to the popular idea of a World Champion as a public figure, but two recent Champions seem to have used the position to further a personal crusade.

When Jackie Stewart frightened himself at Spa, in 1966 before he was very famous, by crashing in a BRM at very high speed and more or less getting away with it, he openly avowed to do away with the Spa-Francorchamps circuit. He could have simply said “I’ll never drive there again” and stuck to his word, but instead he worked unceasingly to get Grand Prix racing away from that Belgian circuit. His position as World Champion later on helped him in his crusade against the Spa-Francorchamps circuit and finally drove the nails into the coffin of the Belgian GP as a classic event. In 1973 Niki Lauda had a lurid accident, also in a BRM, at the Nurburgring on the Bergwerk section of the circuit, and it frightened him considerably, but as he was a young unknown at the time, nobody took much notice and it was described as the car swerved into the guard-rail and he was fortunate to escape with nothing worse than a broken bone in his hand”. The accident went on for along time and covered a long distance and imprinted a dread of the Nurburgring on his mind. By 1976 he was leading a campaign to have the Nurburgring removed from the Grand Prix scene, and he was then World Champion driver. Just as Stewart had become paranoiac about the Spa circuit, Lauda was in a similar state about the Nurburgring. His accident in 1976 at almost the same place as his accident in 1973 was nearly enough for the psycho-analysts to trot out the “death-wish” idea. As Stewart led the crusade to get rid of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit from the GP calendar, to has Lauda led the crusade to get rid of the Nurburgring, and his crusade continues. They could both have said “I don’t drive there any more” and simply gone away, but their position on the World Champion pedestal made them lead the crusade and carry the banner.

I wonder what James Hunt, the reigning World Champion, is planning to get rid of during his term of office? I cannot see him leading a crusade to get rid of Brands Hatch, even though the first time I saw him he was stepping out of the wreckage of a Formula Three car on that circuit. If he tries to get rid of certain journalists and newspapers then I won’t blame him! My feeling is he is going to spend his time making sure that anyone who hopes to beat him on any circuit is going to have to work very hard indeed.—D.S.J.

You may also like

Related products