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BRITISH FORMULA 1 LEGEND DAMON HILL OBE TO HEADLINE AUTOSPORT INTERNATIONAL25-Nov-2015
BRITISH FORMULA 1 LEGEND DAMON HILL OBE TO HEADLINE AUTOSPORT INTERNATIONAL
Autosport International 2016 is delighted to confirm the attendance at the NEC this coming January of one of the most popular British Formula 1 drivers in motorsport history: Damon Hill OBE.
Celebrating 20 years since his memorable Formula 1 Drivers’ Championship victory, the 1996 World Champion will be reunited with his iconic Williams FW18 racing car at Autosport International 2016, among a host of other crowd-pleasing features.
One of the most-loved British racing drivers ever, Hill got his first Formula 1 race seat with Brabham in 1992, but it is Williams with whom he is most associated – and thanks to a unique new Williams celebration feature at the NEC, Autosport International will reunite Hill with not only his championship-winning car but some famous Williams faces too.
Having tested for Sir Frank Williams’ famous racing team in 1991, Hill was given a race seat in 1993, alongside Alain Prost, before partnering Ayrton Senna in 1994, that fateful year in which the Brazilian lost his life at the San Marino Grand Prix.
Hill’s battles with Michael Schumacher that same season are the stuff of legend – most notably the infamous crash in Adelaide, in which he was pipped to the title by just one point – but it all came together in 1996 when Hill became World Champion at the Japanese Grand Prix.
That season, the Williams-Renault FW18 took 12 wins from 16-races (eight in Hill’s hands, four in those of team-mate Jacques Villeneuve) and is statistically the most successful Williams Formula 1 car of all time, scoring 175 points – the most in a season under the old scoring system.
Visitors to Autosport International 2016 will be able to see the FW18 up close – and a host of other Williams F1 cars from the past four decades at the NEC thanks to a major new, unique Williams feature. Among a feast of never-before-seen exhibits, the focal point will be a revamped Autosport Stage which will feature the eight-metre-tall Williams Martini Racing motorhome constructed immediately next to it - the first time it has been erected outside of a racing circuit.
The ever-popular stage will host a number of live interviews with personalities and famous faces from the world of motorsport throughout the event. Fans will have the opportunity to see their heroes and listen to their fascinating accounts from behind the wheel.
Claire Williams, Williams Martini Racing Deputy Team Principal, said: “Williams is inextricably linked with Damon, with both team and driver having enjoyed such a long period of success in the ‘90s. What a privilege it will be to see Damon reunited with FW18 at Autosport International in January, sharing some of his memories.”
Anthony Rowlinson, Group Editor – Motorsport at Haymarket Media Group said: “Over his eight-year career at the pinnacle of motorsport, Hill amassed a famous championship win, 20 pole positions, 22 race wins and 42 podiums. He remains one of Britain’s most successful Formula 1 drivers and is a true icon of the sport.”
Ian France, Autosport International Show Director said: “Damon Hill first attended Autosport International in 1993 when Williams confirmed him as their lead driver alongside Alain Prost. Hill returned to the show four years later as the reigning Formula 1 world champion and we are delighted he will be joining us in 2016 alongside the team he won the title with almost 20 years ago.”