Hill: Moss was a ‘great champion’ in our eyes

Date published: April 13 2020 - Jamie Woodhouse

Ex-F1 driver Damon Hill says it doesn’t matter that Sir Stirling Moss didn’t win the World Championship, because he is a “great champion” in everyone’s eyes.

Moss sadly passed away on April 12 at the age of 90 after battling a long-term illness.

Tributes quickly poured in for the driver widely regarded as the greatest all-round talent in history, and those tributes have continued.

Although he finished runner-up four times in a row from 1955-58, Moss never won the Formula 1 World Championship, but Hill says he is very much up there with the greats who did.

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Today we say goodbye to Sir Stirling Moss, the racing legend. I think it’s important that we celebrate his incredible life and the great man he was. Saying goodbye is never easy and can be sad but he will always be here, in our memories and will always be such a huge part of British Motorsports Heritage. I certainly will miss our conversations. To be honest, it was such a unusual pairing, our friendship. Two people from massively different times and backgrounds but we clicked and ultimately found that the love for racing we both shared made us comrades. I am truly grateful to have had these special moments with him. Sending my prayers and thoughts to his family. May he rest in peace🙏🏾

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Speaking to the BBC, as quoted by newsshopper.co.uk, he said: “He’s right up there with the great names. He’s up there with (Jim) Clark and with Fangio and with (Jackie) Stewart and (Lewis) Hamilton and Niki Lauda and people like that.

“I don’t think anybody regarded him as anything less than one of the greats.”

Hill suspects that the fact Moss never became World Champion would have been a disappointment to him, but it wasn’t necessary because he was a “great champion” in everyone’s eyes.

Moss won 212 of the 529 races he entered in his career.

“I’m sure it was a disappointment to him but he was so stoic, he was brought up to believe in taking it on the chin and I think he very much covered that up.

“But as far as every driver who knows anything about the sport and all the people who follow motorsport is concerned, and the British public, we regarded him as a great champion.

“Everyone regarded him as ‘the man’ frankly, he was the forerunner and one of the biggest names in the sport.

“He won 40 per cent of his races that he actually competed in, in all kinds of vehicles. Whatever he turned up and drove, he won in so that was an extraordinary talent he had.”

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