Phil Hill

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Phil Hill
File:Phil Hill + Jackie Stewart 1991 USA.jpg
Hill (left) and Jackie Stewart at the 1991 United States Grand Prix
Nationality Flag of the United States American
Formula One World Championship career
Active years1958 - 1964, 1966
TeamsMaserati, Ferrari, Cooper, Porsche, Automobili Turismo e Sport, Lotus, Eagle
Races51 (48 starts)
Championships1 (1961)
Wins3
Podiums16
Career points94 (98)[1]
Pole positions6
Fastest laps6
First race1958 French Grand Prix
First win1960 Italian Grand Prix
Last win1961 Italian Grand Prix
Last race1966 Italian Grand Prix
24 Hours of Le Mans career
Participating years1953, 1955-1967
TeamsRees T. Makins
Scuderia Ferrari
Aston Martin
Ford Motor Company
Shelby-American Inc.
Chaparral Cars Inc.
Best finish1st (1958, 1961, 1962)
Class wins3 (1958, 1961, 1962)

Philip Toll Hill, Jr., (April 20, 1927August 28, 2008) was a United States automobile racer and the only American-born driver to win the Formula One World Drivers' Championship. Hill was described as a "thoughtful, gentle man" and once said, "I'm in the wrong business. I don't want to beat anybody, I don't want to be the big hero. I'm a peace-loving man, basically.[2]

Career

Born in Miami, Florida, Hill was raised in Santa Monica, California, where he lived until his death. He studied business administration at the University of Southern California in 1945-47 but left early to pursue auto racing, working as a mechanic on other drivers' cars.[3] Hill began racing cars at an early age, going to England as a Jaguar trainee in 1949 and signing with Enzo Ferrari’s team in 1956. He made his debut in the French Grand Prix at Reims France in 1958 driving a Maserati. That same year, paired with Belgian teammate Olivier Gendebien, Hill became the first American-born winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans [4] with Hill driving most of the night in horrific rainy conditions. He and Gendebien would go on to win the famous endurance race again in 1961 and 1962.

Hill driving for Ferrari at the 1962 German Grand Prix.

Hill began driving full-time for the Ferrari Formula One team in 1959, earning three podium finishes and fourth place in the Driver's Championship. In 1960 he won the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, the first Grand Prix win for an American driver. The following season, Hill won the Belgian Grand Prix and with two races left trailed only his Ferrari teammate Wolfgang von Trips in the season standings. Tragically, a crash during the Italian Grand Prix killed von Trips and fifteen spectators. Hill won the race and clinched the championship but the triumph was bittersweet. Ferrari's decision not to travel to America for the season's final round deprived Hill of the opportunity to participate in his home race at Watkins Glen as the newly-crowned World Champion. When he returned for the following season, his last with Ferrari, Hill said, "I no longer have as much need to race, to win. I don't have as much hunger anymore. I am no longer willing to risk killing myself."[2]

After leaving Ferrari at the end of 1962 in the great walkout of engineers, he and fellow driver Giancarlo Baghetti started for their new team ATS. Hill continued in Formula One for a few more years until he switched to sports car racing with Ford Motor Company and the Chaparral Cars of Jim Hall.

Phil Hill has the distinction of having won the first (a 3 lap event at Carrell Speedway in a MG TC on July 24 1949) and last races of his driving career, the final victory driving for Chaparral in the BOAC 500 at Brands Hatch in England in 1967.

Following his retirement, Hill built up an award winning classic car restoration business in the 1970s called Hill & Vaughn with business partner Ken Vaughn, until they sold the partnership to Jordanian Raja Gargour and Vaughn went on run a separate business on his own in 1984. Phil remained with Gargour at Hill & Vaughn until the sale of the business again in 1995.[5] Hill also worked as a television commentator for ABC's Wide World of Sports[6]

Hill had a long and distinguished association with Road & Track magazine. He wrote several articles for them, including road tests and retrospective articles on historic cars and races. He shared his "grand old man" status at R&T with '60s racing rival Paul Frère, who also died in 2008.

Hill, in his last years, devoted his time to his vintage car collection and judged at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance more often than any other individual; 2007 was the 40th time he had judged the event. [7]

Hill was married to Alma, and had three children: Derek, Vanessa and Jennifer.[8] Derek raced in International Formula 3000 in 2001, 2002 and 2003, but was forced to retire when Hill became ill with Parkinson's Disease.

After traveling to the Monterey Historic Automobile Races in August 2008, Hill was taken to a hospital, where he died after a short illness from complications of Parkinson's Disease in Salinas, California on August 28th.[9]

Formula One World Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position; races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 WDC Pts.[1]
1958 Joakim Bonnier Racing Team Maserati 250F Maserati L6 ARG
MON
NED
500
BEL
FRA
7
GBR
10th 9
Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari Dino 156 Ferrari V6 GER
9
POR
Ferrari Dino 246 Ferrari V6 ITA
3
MOR
3
1959 Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 256 Ferrari V6 MON
4
500
NED
6
FRA
2
GBR
GER
3
POR
Ret
ITA
2
USA
Ret
4th 20
1960 Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 256 Ferrari V6 ARG
8
MON
3
500
NED
Ret
BEL
4
FRA
12
GBR
7
POR
Ret
ITA
1
5th 16
Yeoman Credit Racing Team Cooper T51 Climax L4 USA
6
1961 Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 156 Ferrari V6 MON
3
NED
2
BEL
1
FRA
9
GBR
2
GER
3
ITA
1
USA
1st 34 (38)
1962 Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 156 Ferrari V6 NED
3
MON
2
BEL
3
FRA
GBR
Ret
GER
Ret
ITA
11
6th 14
Porsche System Engineering Porsche 804 Porsche F8 USA
DNS
RSA
1963 Automobili Turismo e Sport ATS 100 ATS V8 MON
BEL
Ret
NED
Ret
ITA
11
USA
Ret
MEX
Ret
RSA
NC 0
Ecurie Filipinetti Lotus 24 BRM V8 MON
FRA
NC
GBR
GER
1964 Cooper Car Company Cooper T73 Climax V8 MON
9
NED
8
BEL
Ret
FRA
7
GBR
6
GER
Ret
USA
Ret
MEX
9
19th 1
Cooper T66 Climax V8 AUT
Ret
ITA
1966 Anglo American Racers Eagle T1G Climax L4 MON
BEL
FRA
GBR
NED
GER
ITA
DNQ
USA
MEX
NC 0

Awards

Primary career victories :

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Up until 1990, not all points scored by a driver contributed to their final World Championship tally (see list of pointscoring systems for more information). Numbers without parentheses are Championship points; numbers in parentheses are total points scored.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Daley, Robert (1963). The Cruel Sport.
  3. Jim Peltz, Phil Hill dies at 81; only American-born driver to win Formula One title, Los Angeles Times, August 29, 2008.
  4. "Phil Hill, a Racing Legend at Odds With the Sport at Times, Is Dead at 81". New York Times. 2008-08-28. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/29/sports/othersports/29hill.html?sq=phil%20hill&st=cse&adxnnl=1&scp=1&adxnnlx=1221341626-EscZBCokTZE2FOJky33vMQ. Retrieved on 13 September 2008. 
  5. Glenn Vaughn - Restoration Services, Inc
  6. 8W - Who? - Phil Hill
  7. Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance : People
  8. "American racing legend Phil Hill has died". autosport.com. 2008-08-28. http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/70116. Retrieved on 29 August 2008. 
  9. "Phil Hill, 81; first U.S.-born driver to win Formula One title". Los Angeles Times. 2008-08-28. http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-hill29-2008aug29,0,6287854.story?track=rss. Retrieved on 29 August 2008. 

References

  • Daley, Robert. The Cruel Sport. Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1963.

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Jack Brabham
Formula One World Champion
1961
Succeeded by
Graham Hill
Preceded by
Ron Flockhart
Ivor Bueb
Winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans
1958 with:
Olivier Gendebien
Succeeded by
Carroll Shelby
Roy Salvadori
Preceded by
Olivier Gendebien
Paul Frère
Winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans
1961 with:
Olivier Gendebien
Succeeded by
Olivier Gendebien
Phil Hill
Preceded by
Olivier Gendebien
Phil Hill
Winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans
1962 with:
Olivier Gendebien
Succeeded by
Ludovico Scarfiotti
Lorenzo Bandini