Damon Hill

Watch­ing the wheels By Damon Hill

Old Bike Australasia - - EYES RIGHT -

Pub­lished by Macmil­lan RRP: $32.99 358 pages soft cover ISBN: 978-1-5098-3191-3 Avail­able from www.pit­stop.net.au

When 1996 World For­mula One cham­pion Damon Hill was re­cently asked to name his dream car he replied, “I don’t dream of cars, I pre­fer mo­tor­cy­cles.” Now there’s a man after my own heart. Grow­ing up in the shadow of his fa­mous fa­ther Gra­ham – twice World F1 cham­pion - who per­ished in an air crash in Novem­ber 1975, was not easy. Damon says, “Clearly I in­her­ited a lot from my fa­ther, but, just as clearly, I am not him.” Damon was just 15 at the time of his fa­ther’s death, and his cho­sen pas­sage into mo­tor sport was ini­tially via mo­tor­cy­cles, where he showed con­sid­er­able tal­ent in the fe­ro­ciously hard-fought LC Yamaha se­ries be­fore in­evitably grad­u­at­ing to four wheels. To get there, he worked sev­eral jobs, in­clud­ing as a mo­tor­cy­cle courier and builders labourer, and bor­rowed a con­sid­er­able amount of money. It was a long hard slog in lesser for­mu­lae be­fore he landed a test­ing con­tract with Wil­liams, and for 1993 was drafted into the team proper along­side Alain Prost. After the death of team mate Ayr­ton Senna in 1994, Hill in­her­ited the po­si­tion of team leader and could have won the cham­pi­onship had he not been rammed by Michael Schu­macher in Ade­laide. Two years later, he put that right, be­com­ing the first son of a pre­vi­ous F1 cham­pion to take the ti­tle. Like the man him­self, this book is deep and some­what re­strained, but Hill is a very fine and elo­quent writer, which comes through loud and clear in this com­pelling read.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.