McNish on being voted into Hall of Fame: ‘I’m so proud to be recognised’
After being voted by Motor Sport readers into the Hall of Fame as our next 'Le Mans Legend', Allan McNish looks back on a glittering career
Each year we induct racing luminaries to the Motor Sport magazine Hall of Fame. Here is the full list of racing greats that have become members since the first event in February 2010.
The founding members were chosen by Motor Sport: giants of racing, including Juan Manuel Fangio, Stirling Moss and Michael Schumacher, who made racing what it is today, and whose inclusion was a given.
Since then, new members have been voted in by our readers, with the latest inductees announced in December 2021.
Scroll down to view every inductee, or click below to jump to the section you’re looking for, by surname.
The most successful motorcycle racer of all time won an incredible 15 world championships on 350cc and 500cc machines, 122 race wins and 10 Isle of Man TTs. He raced for MV Agusta between 1965 and 1973 before moving to rival Yamaha for the 1974 and ’75 seasons, but it wasn’t just his prowess on track that made him so popular. His charm and good looks meant he quickly transcended the sport and became and international superstar. Ago’s popularity is undimmed, even after stepping away from professional racing. Smooth on and off the bike, he was the last of his breed – before the knee-down dirt track style of Kenny Roberts changed the sport forever.
Born in Italy where he was entranced by Alberto Ascari’s performances for Ferrari at Monza, Mario Andretti later became a four-time IndyCar champion, three-time winner of the Sebring 12 Hours, 1978 Formula 1 World Champion, 1969 Indianapolis 500 winner and the 1967 Daytona 500 winner. Andretti is one of the most versatile racing drivers ever, and the Italo-American competed for five decades, winning races nearly everywhere he went. Towards the end of his career he competed alongside his son Michael; now grandson Marco races for the family’s team in IndyCar.
Debonair five-time Le Mans winner and world champion Derek Bell graced endurance racing through three decades. He remains a huge fan favourite.
His two years with Tyrrell in 1984 and ’85 showed glimpses of a star F1 talent in the making but it was in prototypes where Bellof shined brightest. Winner of the World Sportscar crown in 1984, he surely would have been one of the top drivers in F1 in years to come.
To be the Formula 1 World Champion twice – in 1959-60 – is impressive, but Brabham went on to found a new team of his own and become the only driver ever to win the title (his third, in ’66) in a car bearing his own name, as well as take two Constructors’ Championships. Brabham was still racing at the top level aged 44, winning the 1970 South African GP. Yet his legacy, from the MRD/Brabham team to his racing family, has made his name one which still resonates around the motor sport world.
One of the most successful race car designers of all time, Ross Brawn won the World Sportscar Championship with Jaguar in 1991 before joining Benetton in Formula 1. Working with Michael Schumacher, the team won the 1994 and ’95 drivers’ championships as well as the constructors’ title in the latter year. Both moved to Ferrari in the late ’90s and won five straight titles together from 2000-04 before Brawn took the reins at Honda. When the manufacturer pulled out he rallied the team and, now named Brawn GP, won the 2009 championship with Jenson Button.
Stirling Moss calls Brooks “the greatest unknown racing driver there has ever been”. The ‘racing dentist’ may not have attracted as much attention as some of his contemporaries, but he was regarded by them as one of the very best there has been. Brooks won six Grands Prix for Vanwall and Ferrari between 1956-61 and took four pole positions. Racing for Connaught at a non-championship race at Syracuse in 1955 he scored the first post-war Grand Prix victory for a British manufacturer, dominant against better-equipped international competition.
British F3 rival to Ayrton Senna, World Sportscar Champion and mainstay in Formula 1 broadcasting for decades. Martin Brundle racing driver-turned-broadcaster insights have helped bring F1 racing to fans with authority and familiarity and of course a unique style with his grid walks.
Founder of Lotus, Colin Chapman took his company from a garden shed to producing some of the world’s most desirable road cars and most fearsome racers. Along the way, Chapman cemented his reputation as an innovator; in the 1960s he introduced the monocoque chassis to motor racing, spearheaded the rear-engined revolution at Indianapolis and, with Cosworth, revolutionised racing car design with the DFV-powered 49. His ideas came to define aerodynamic theory in motor sport. Lotus won six Drivers’ Championships, seven Constructors’ Championships and 79 Grands Prix.
The quiet Scot won two world championships in 1963 and ’65. He was well known for winning in any type of car he had the chance to drive, including the Indy 500 in ’65 and the ’64 British Saloon Car Championship. At the time of his death he had won more GPs, 25, than anyone in history.
Kick-starting a revolution in Formula 1 racing, John Cooper achieved success at the race track and in the car showrooms. His T51 was paradigm-shifting and the Mini Cooper became a racing legend, much like the man himself.
With Keith Duckworth, Costin changed the face of F1 when their company, Cosworth, released the DFV. It turned Grand Prix racing into something akin to a spec series, as so many chose the engine. Only Ferrari has claimed more GP wins as an engine supplier, with Cosworth powering cars to 176 GP wins and 22 world titles (12 for drivers, 10 for constructors). But Cosworth’s impact stretched far beyond F1 – it has won Le Mans, multiple Indy 500s and numerous championships in America. It has also been involved with many road cars, including Aston Martin’s Valkyrie. And all from humble beginnings, 60 years ago.
The former Cooper and Brabham teamster started Rondel Racing with Neil Trundle in 1971, and within 10 years was at the helm at McLaren. He led the F1 team to seven Constructors’ and 10 Drivers’ Championships and took the McLaren Group, of which he is now executive chairman, to the forefront of the sport and the industry. Working with drivers of the calibre of Lauda, Prost, Senna, Häkkinen and designers such as Barnard, Murray and Newey, Dennis has seen more success in F1 that most would dare to dream of.
Six-time IndyCar champion Scott Dixon continues to defy time and compete at the highest level of US racing.
A premier-class king, Mick Doohan is indesputibly a legend of motorcycle racing. Doohan cemented his legacy after coming back from what should have been a career-ending leg break. His mental fortitude, desire to return and mental strength to deal with the pain led to five-consecutive 500cc titles between 1994 and 1998.
A game-changing engine, the Cosworth DFV revolutionised Formula 1 racing and Keith Duckworth’s creation was soon the most in-demand engine on the grid.
Although he was already in his 40s, the Maestro succeeded Nuvolari as racing’s greatest driver in the post-war world. The Argentinian won an astonishing five world championships between 1951 and ’57 for four different manufacturers – Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, Mercedes and Maserati.
‘Il Commendatore’ was the founder of Scuderia Ferrari and one of motor sport’s most influential figures. He was renowned for his genius and temperamental nature in equal measure, but without him Ferrari and its many Grand Prix victories would never have happened.
An avid enthusiast of the history of the sport, a true admirer of fellow Scot Jimmy Clark and a collector of memorabilia and images of the double Formula 1 World Champion. Sounds like a member of Motor Sport’s staff doesn’t it? The similarities end there. Dario Franchitti is a true enthusiast, but he also happens to be a man who has won the IndyCar Championship an impressive four times and the Indianapolis 500 three times, as well as the Daytona 24 Hours in 2008. In terms of achievers in modern day sport, he is at the pinnacle.
At home in F1, sports cars, Can-Am, Indycars… Through five decades Dan Gurney has been a benchmark in the cockpit and a charismatic leader for his sport out of it.
Good on four wheels, one of the best ever on two, Mike Hailwood was a popular winner in the motorcycling category. He won nine world championships, the third-highest of all time; 14 Isle of Man TTs, including two after he returned to the island in 1978 following his four-wheeled career; and 76 world motorcycle championship races, putting him fourth in the all-time list. He was a character, universally popular, and a true star of the sport.
Following in his father’s footsteps, Damon matured into a racer himself. After the death of Ayrton Senna he would find himself thrust into the role of team leader at Williams, where he would win the title in 1996.
Graham Hill is the only driver to win the ‘Triple Crown’ of motor sport. He won the F1 World Championship in 1962 and ’68, the Indianapolis 500 in ’66 and Le Mans in ’72. Never considered a natural like his contemporaries Clark or Stewart, he still set a record with five victories at Monaco. Graham was tragically killed in a plane crash in 1975
He’s all too often overlooked when racing’s all-time greats are discussed, but Phil Hill’s career was one of success and variety. He won Le Mans three times in the 1950s and ’60s, and is the only man to have won the Le Mans 24 Hours and the F1 world championship in the same year. He was three times a Grand Prix winner – but his stature is far greater than that simple statistic might suggest. He was an engineer as much as a racer, and was also a distinguished photographer and a true gent.
Entering Formula 1 in 1973 with the hard-partying Hesketh team, James Hunt quickly established himself as a highly competitive Grand Prix driver. Switching to McLaren in 1976 he won the championship in his first season with the team after a dramatic battle with Niki Lauda. Hunt retired from the cockpit in 1979 and formed an entertaining partnership with Murray Walker in the commentary box until his death of a heart attack in 1993.
Ickx may have won eight Grands Prix for Ferrari and Brabham, but he is more often remembered for his remarkable six outright victories in the Le Mans 24 Hours, scored in Ford, Mirage and Porsches from 1969-82. The Belgian’s tally had looked unbeatable, but was bettered by Tom Kristensen in 2005. As well as these achievements, he won at Bathurst in 1977, was Can Am champion in 1979 and won the Paris-Dakar rally in 1983. Master of some of Europe’s most challenging circuits, Ickx is truly one of the greatest all-around racing talents.
Tom Kristensen won Le Mans at his first attempt in 1997 and currently has a record nine victories to his name. One of the stars of Audi’s near-monopoly of La Sarthe over the past 10 years, he has helped revolutionise endurance racing with the advent of diesel and hybrid technology in sports cars. As well as his wins at Le Mans, Kristensen also has six victories at Sebring and one at Petit Le Mans, making him the most successful sports car driver of his era.
Triple World Champions are in an exclusive club, but the courageous and intelligent manner in which Niki Lauda went about winning his make him unique among his peers. Joining Ferrari in 1974, he teamed up with Luca di Montezemolo and Mauro Forghieri to drag Ferrari back to respectability, winning the championship in 1975 before suffering severe burns in a near-fatal crash at the Nürburgring in ’76. He returned only six weeks later to take fourth at Monza. Retaking the title in ’77, he retired two years later to start his own airline. In 1982, Ron Dennis was able to lure him to McLaren, where he won his third title in 1984.
Man or machine? The spirit that has taken him beyond nine WRC titles to Le Mans, Pikes Peak, the Dakar and now world rallycross suggests the former.
Our Nige, Il Leone – Nigel Mansell might not have been to everyone’s taste, but for many he’s everything that was great about Formula 1. He did it the hard way, and would have won more titles had Lady Luck not been on the opposing side.
McGuinness, the Morecambe Missile, is the son of a motorcycle mechanic and he initially trained as a bricklayer. By the early 1990s, though, he was dovetailing ‘bike racing and his job, picking cockles… It was the former that took him to stardom. Best known for his prowess on the Isle of Man he has won a staggering 20 TTs, only six fewer than Joey Dunlop, and still holds the outright lap record of 131.671mph. He still races and it would be a brave man to bet against him winning more races on the Isle of Man.
McLaren is a man who very simply transcends the sport. A Grand Prix winner in a car bearing his own name, Le Mans winner with Ford, dominant in Can-Am with his near-unbeatable McLarens, his name still resonates in racing and on the road. When he won the 1959 US Grand Prix he became the youngest world championship race winner (not including the Indy 500) at 22y 3m 12d, a record that stood until 2003. He won three more, his last almost a decade after the first.
Three Le Mans wins, three ALMS titles and the 2013 World Endurance Championship title, Allan McNish combined pace, aggression and caution in perfect balance to great effect in the world of sports car racing.
Colin McRae broke the mould – he was the first British rally driver to beat the best in the world at their own game, the first to win the World Rally Championship after decades dominated largely by Scandinavians. In 1995 – after beating Carlos Sainz in a straight fight on the Rally of Great Britain – he became the youngest-ever driver to take the world title. He will forever be associated with Prodrive’s superb blue Subaru Impreza and remembered as the man who didn’t drive for points, but for outright victory. We sadly lost McRae in a helicopter crash in 2007, but his exuberant style will be remembered by fans for many years to come.
The standard-setter in Formula 1 for an entire generation, Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains have secured, as of 2021, a record eight-consecutive constructors’ championships. The Brixworth part of the Mercedes team is responsible for the power units that have powered the team to incredible success in F1.
Best known for his affiliation with Carroll Shelby and the development of the iconic Ford GT40, Ken Miles became a Hall of Fame inductee in 2020. With Daytona and Sebring wins to his name and a critical role in the Ford win at Le Mans in ’66, his contributions to motor sport were put to film in Le Mans ’66.
Arguably the greatest all-round racing driver of all time. Stirling was and is known as ‘Mr Motor Racing’. He excelled in every type of machinery he piloted, be it saloon cars, 500s or Formula 1. Extremely unlucky not to win a world championship, Moss nevertheless remains a true icon of the sport.
She remains the only woman to have won a WRC round, with four victories in total, Michèle Mouton made a name for herself on the WRC circuit with Audi. Her natural talent and self-determination won her several French and European women’s rally titles in the mid-1970s on the way to WRC.
Adrian Newey is the only Formula 1 designer to have won championships with three different teams, and his cars’ tally of eight drivers’ and eight constructors’ titles matches the grand total racked up by the whole Williams team itself. The numbers tell the story. The highs? Titles for Nigel Mansell, Alain Prost, Damon Hill, Jacques Villeneuve and Mika Häkkinen. The lows? The death of Ayrton Senna, and the most difficult point of his career… But perhaps his biggest achievements have been his most recent. Red Bull was a gimmicky midfield team, until the Horner/Newey/Vettel axis hit its stride. Now it sets the bar ‘grandees’ such as McLaren and Ferrari strive to reach.
Without doubt the most accomplished driver of his era and arguably one of the fastest. Nuvolari was European Drivers’ Champion in 1932, winner of the 1933 Le Mans 24 Hours, winner of the Mille Miglia in 1930 and ’33, and was also 350cc Motorcycle European Champion in ’25.
Palmer can list the development and preservation of five UK racing circuits among his achievements. As joint owner of MotorSport Vision he bought Brands Hatch, Snetterton, Oulton Park and Cadwell Park when they were at their lowest ebb and they have thrived under his guidance. He has now turned his attention to Donington Park… This versatile former racer’s continued enthusiasm for the sport underlines just how much he merited the award.
The Captain’s eponymous racing team is an American institution with victories in every major four-wheel category, including F1. He and Mark Donohue formed a formidable partnership in the ’60s and ’70s, and Penske is still winning titles 50 years on.
Winner four times at the great race, including three in a row for French marque Matra in the 1970s, his name is synonymous with Le Mans. He started the race 33 times – a record that is unlikely to be beaten any time soon. Once retired, he returned as a team owner… and came very close to beating the might of Audi.
From the outset, there was only ever one winner in the new-for-2018 racing car category. Devised to recognise the many iconic machines that strike a chord with race fans, the Porsche 917 beat the likes of the Audi Quattro, Jaguar XJR-9 and the McLaren MP4/4. Twice a Le Mans winner, in 1970 and ’71, it was one of the fastest and most feared cars of its era. It’s a car that resonates in sports car racing today.
The statistics speak for themselves: 51 Grand Prix victories, four World Driver’s Championships. But it is Alain Prost’s intangible qualities that mark him out as one of the greats, combining an incredibly smooth style with a finely tuned racing brain. Perhaps unfairly, his career is probably best remembered for his intense rivalry with Ayrton Senna, sparked when the two drove for McLaren in the late ’80s, but comparisons and politics aside, Prost remains one of the best Grand Prix drivers of all time.
2007 and to date Ferrari’s last world champion, Kimi Räikkönen is the most experienced driver in Formula 1 history and probably one of the most popular too. The Finn’s no nonsense style has won him legions of fans around the world but his speed was undeniable from his early years.
One of the underrated greats for many, but not for Motor Sport readers who know all about the humble Lancastrian’s formidable talent. He might not have won Le Mans, but he won every other sports car race that mattered.
Motor Sport’s editorial team selected Prodrive’s David Richards CBE to be the first to receive the new Industry champion award. He has won titles in rallying and sports cars, and had stints in F1 with BAR and Benetton. David Brabham who, along with Subaru managing director Paul Tunnicliffe, presented Richards with his award said: “He’s in the same category as Penske.”
Fearless, quick and effortlessly cool, Jochen Rindt embodied the world of motor racing in the second half of the 1960s. Flamboyant in and out of the cockpit, his clear talent took him to the heights of a Formula 1 world championship though in the most tragic of circumstances.
Victories at Le Mans, Daytona, Watkins Glen and Monza, motorcycling success and champion as a teen and Mexico’s first F1 winner, Pedro Rodriguez was selected by Motor Sport readers in 2019 to join the ranks in the Hall of Fame.
The record books have been at his mercy, but like all racing heroes it’s the style and manner of his approach that means the most. Valentino Rossi transcended his sport.
A driver who was known for being erratic, wild and – most importantly – fast. He traveled to Britain in the 1960s to make his name and by 1973 he was a Grand Prix driver after impressing McLaren in the US GP the previous year. It was at Ferrari in 1979 that he really made his mark on history though. Alongside his great friend Gilles Villeneuve, he took the Prancing Horse to World Championship glory, his style having matured and his confidence never higher. He was the last Ferrari World Champion for a barren 21-year spell that ended with Schumacher in 2000.
This seven-time world champion is the man who broke all records. Over a Formula 1 career spanning two decades he won 91 Grands Prix, finished on the podium 154 times and earned 68 pole positions. In 2010 he made a return for Mercedes-Benz after three seasons out of the sport.
The Brazilian racing driver from São Paulo won three world championships for McLaren in 1988, ’90 and ’91. He was a deeply spiritual man and waged a bitter rivalry with Alain Prost. His speed over a single lap and in wet conditions sealed his reputation as the awesome force of his era.
An icon of ’70s sport, he defined the era along with James Hunt. He was a normal Londoner who conquered the world, twice. In 1976 he won five of the first seven Grands Prix, wrapped up the title and promptly went on holiday. As cool as they come.
JYS won three world championships in 1969, ’71 and ’73 for Matra and Tyrrell. The Scot went on to start his own Formula 1 team in 1997 but perhaps his greatest legacy is for almost single-handedly leading the drive for improved safety standards, saving numerous lives in the process.
John Surtees, the only man to become World Champion on motorbikes and in Grand Prix cars. The first world title on bikes came in only his first year with MV Agusta, 1956, and six more would follow for ‘Il Grande John’. But Surtees had larger ambitions and signed for the Lotus F1 team. In cars as on bikes Surtees displayed speed and fearlessness, catching the eye of Enzo Ferrari, and it was in his cars that he added the 1964 World Championship to his record. He went on to form his own team, both developing and driving in F1, while Surtees cars also proved successful in F5000 and won the ’72 European F2 title.
The Canadian remains a favourite of the Formula 1 fan for his unmistakable and hugely popular approach to his racing. Six race victories during a tragically short career, Villeneuve’s place among the all-time greats is unquestioned despite others claiming higher numbers or more accolades. Incredible bravery, edge-of-your-seat ability and flat out speed, his hero status is cemented.
Murray Walker is a national treasure. For a quarter of a century his unmistakable voice brought Formula 1 into millions of homes: it could be said that he replaced roast beef and Yorkshire pud as the staple diet of the British Sunday afternoon.
Formula 1’s late, much-loved doctor, Sid Watkins contributed so much to driver safety from the late 1970s. His influence has stretched beyond his lifetime.
His statistics are impressive: nine constructors’ World Championships, seven drivers’ titles, 114 Grand Prix wins – all scored in the past 32 years. Ferrari and McLaren have more wins – but then both have been going a lot longer. Yet for Frank Williams – who joins Enzo Ferrari, Ron Dennis and Jack Brabham in our roll of great team principals – it doesn’t matter. You know the most important stats to him are the ones that can still be written. Overseeing a change of personnel at the team, Williams looks set to return to its former competitiveness.
A two-time CART champion, Alex Zanardi’s motor racing career and life was changed forever after his horrendous 2001 crash and double leg amputation. His mental fortitude and passion for competition led to Paralympic golds in handcycling.
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