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United Kingdom Mike Hawthorn

Races: 47
Podiums: 18
Championships: 1
Career Points: 113

1952United Kingdom LD Hawthorn 1952 F1 Season : Mike HawthornCooper   Bristol BS1 2.0 L6 Cooper T20 MKI 
1952United Kingdom AHM Bryde 1952 F1 Season : Mike HawthornCooper   Bristol BS1 2.0 L6 Cooper T20 MKI 
1953Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari   Ferrari 500 2.0 L4, Ferrari 553 2.0 L4 Ferrari 500 F2
1954Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari   Ferrari 625 2.5 L4, Ferrari 554 2.5 L4, Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 Ferrari 625
Ferrari 553
Ferrari 500 F2 
1955Italy Scuderia Ferrari 1955 F1 Season : Mike HawthornFerrari   Ferrari 555 2.5 L4, Lancia DS50 2.5 V8 Ferrari 625
Lancia D50 
1955United Kingdom Vandervell Products 1955 F1 Season : Mike Hawthorn   Vanwall 254 2.5 L4 VW 55 
1956United Kingdom Vandervell Products    Vanwall 254 2.5 L4 VW 2 
1956United Kingdom Owen Racing Organisation Maserati   Maserati 250F1 2.5 L6, BRM P25 2.5 L4 Maserati 250F 
1957Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari   Ferrari DS50 2.5 V8 Ferrari 801 
1958Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari   Ferrari 143 2.4 V6 Ferrari 246 F1

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Mike Hawthorn: A True Yorkshire Terrier

By Jeremy McMullen
Page: 1 2 next >>
In the early morning hours of January 22nd, 1959, with the wind howling, Mike Hawthorn would finally come up against a challenger that would end up being more than his equal. And in those early morning hours along the A3 near Guildford, the British people would lose its first-ever World Champion.

Born in Mexborough, Yorkshire in 1929, John Michael Hawthorn would certainly have a lot in common with the small breed of dog. Some would say he was arrogant. He would also be very independent and rather difficult. But he would also do and say a lot of things that would make him no stranger to controversy.

As a young boy, Mike would be introduced to motor racing by observing races at the famed Brooklands motor racing circuit during the days before World War II. Although born in Mexborough, Mike would still be surrounded with tuned motorbikes and cars as a result of his father Leslie who was a trained engineer and raced and tuned cars and motorbikes on the side.

Then, in the early 1930s, Leslie would take his family and would move to Farnham in Surrey. There, with partner Paddy Johnstone, Leslie would open the Tourist Trophy Garage. By the later-‘30s Mike would be at his father's garage each and every day. Despite being less than 10 years of age Mike would still be seen helping his father around the garage.

If Mike wasn't at the garage he would be at Brooklands watching the intense action. Speaking about this experience Hawthorn would relate: 'The first motor races I ever saw were at Brooklands. I was only a very small boy, but to me it was heaven to watch the cars thundering round those towering cliffs of concrete where the banking curved under the Members' Bridge, to wander along the lines of brightly coloured cars in their stalls in the paddock, to jump as an exhaust snarled suddenly and to sniff the aroma of castor oil.'

It was clear that Hawthorn's greatest education would be in the field of motor racing. And after Leslie took Mike around Brooklands in a 2.0-liter Riley, Mike determined from that moment on that he would become a racing driver. This would never show up more vividly than in school where he would be never more than an average student. It was clear that athletics and sports were of greater importance to the boy.

By the time Mike was ten years of age the Second World War was just heating up and many a man would be called into service of his country in order to stem the German advance. Meanwhile, Mike would be still more concerned with motor racing than with conquering nations.
1958156Ferrari 143 2.4 V6
1958Ferrari 246 F1Ferrari 143 2.4 V6
1957Ferrari 801Ferrari DS50 2.5 V8
1956VW 2Vanwall 254 2.5 L4
1956Maserati 250FMaserati 250F1 2.5 L6, BRM P25 2.5 L4
1955VW 55Vanwall 254 2.5 L4
1955Lancia D50Ferrari 555 2.5 L4, Lancia DS50 2.5 V8
1955555Ferrari 555 2.5 L4, Lancia DS50 2.5 V8
1955Ferrari 625Ferrari 555 2.5 L4, Lancia DS50 2.5 V8
1954Ferrari 500 F2Ferrari 625 2.5 L4, Ferrari 554 2.5 L4, Ferrari 500 2.0 L4
1954Ferrari 553Ferrari 625 2.5 L4, Ferrari 554 2.5 L4, Ferrari 500 2.0 L4
1954Ferrari 625Ferrari 625 2.5 L4, Ferrari 554 2.5 L4, Ferrari 500 2.0 L4
1953Ferrari 500 F2Ferrari 500 2.0 L4, Ferrari 553 2.0 L4
1953553Ferrari 500 2.0 L4, Ferrari 553 2.0 L4
1952Cooper T20 MKIBristol BS1 2.0 L6
1952Cooper T20 MKIBristol BS1 2.0 L6

After war's end, Hawthorn would go to work at Dennis Bros of Guildford. Dennis Bros of Guildford would actually employ another man by the name of Alan Brown. Brown would also be a regular competitor in grand prix racing during the early 1950s and would actually earn Cooper their first World Championship points. Hawthorn and Brown would compete against each other regularly and would even drive the same type of chassis.

But that would still be a few years away. In the meantime, Hawthorn would work as an apprentice. In order to get to work, Mike would drive a 1939 Triumph his father had had rebuilt for him.

But while Mike would become well known for his talents on four wheels, his first success would actually come on two. In 1947 he would have enough money to buy a BSA trial bike and would soon decide to start racing. In his first-ever event, a novice cup race, Mike would take the victory. This would be the encouragement Mike would need to focus on becoming an engineering student in order to prepare race cars and motorbikes, and even to go racing. However, there was one big problem—studies.Every son needs a father, and it was time for Leslie to step into the situation and provide his son some guidance. Realizing that his son's talents lay in driving and not in engineering, Leslie would provide the means for his son to go racing. And in 1950, Mike would be successfully competing in Rileys, Ulster Imps and a Sprite. It was clear, just I during the 1950 season that Mike was a natural racer and deserved to graduate into the higher formulas.

But then conditions would open the door for the big blonde racing driver. At the end of the 1951 Formula One World Championship season Alfa Romeo would withdraw from the series leaving only Ferrari as the main factory effort. The World Championship needed to reduce costs and increase competition. It needed time to come up with a winning formula. And in the meantime, Formula 2 had just what the World Championship would need. This would open a door of opportunity to Mike that likely would have been at least a year further off.

Heading into the 1952 season, Mike would drive for Robert Chase. Chase would purchase a Cooper-Bristol T20 for Hawthorn to use and the exceptional abilities of the then 23 year old would go on full display.

With the help of his father preparing the car, Mike would make his World Championship debut at the Belgian Grand Prix in 1952. And in the rain, he would manage to come through to score an incredible 4th place result. Just a few months later Hawthorn would score an incredible podium result in his home grand prix. The 3rd place result Alberto Ascari and Piero Taruffi would gain a lot of attention. But it would be the Daily Mail Trophy race at Boreham that would draw the attention of more than one team manager.

246 F1  246 F1  801  250F  250F  625  625  
500 F2  553  553  625  625  500 F2  T20 MKI  T20 MKI  T20 MKI  T20 MKI  
In the wet conditions of the Daily Mail Trophy race Mike would wield his Formula 2 Cooper-Bristol around the circuit passing the Formula One Ferrari 375 piloted by Luigi Villoresi. He would hold onto the lead until the rain stopped and the track dried. Once dry, the full power of the Ferrari 375 would be more than Hawthorn could contend and he would end up finishing 3rd. But it would be the race that would really set his racing career in motion.

After the performance at Boreham, he would be approached by Jaguar's Lofty England. England had witnessed the performance and would later comment, 'I saw him drive at Boreham, and it rained like hell in the afternoon. He passed and led Villoresi…in the wet—in his little Cooper-Bristol. I thought, ‘this is my boy.''

Within a matter of days Mike would be testing in a specially-prepared C-Type. And within a few laps would be under the lap record. But Lofty wouldn't be the only one that would be impressed by Hawthorn's performance. Enzo Ferrari would end up offering Hawthorn a contract to drive for Ferrari in 1953. Hawthorn would take the opportunity and would become the first British driver to be signed by a major manufacturer from Europe since Dick Seaman.

United Kingdom Drivers  F1 Drivers From United Kingdom 
George Edgar Abecassis
Henry Clifford Allison
Robert 'Bob' Anderson
Peter Arundell
Peter Hawthorn Ashdown
Ian Hugh Gordon Ashley
Gerald Ashmore
William 'Bill' Aston
Richard James David 'Dickie' Attwood
Julian Bailey
John Barber
Donald Beauman
Derek Reginald Bell
Mike Beuttler
Mark Blundell
Eric Brandon
Thomas 'Tommy' Bridger
Thomas 'Tommy' Bridger
David Bridges
Anthony William Brise
Chris Bristow
Charles Anthony Standish 'Tony' Brooks
Alan Everest Brown
William Archibald Scott Brown
Martin John Brundle
Ivor Léon John Bueb
Ian Burgess
Jenson Alexander Lyons Button
Michael John Campbell-Jones
Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman
Max Chilton
James 'Jim' Clark, Jr.
Peter John Collins
David Marshall Coulthard
Piers Raymond Courage
Christopher Craft
Jim Crawford
John Colum 'Johnny Dumfries' Crichton-Stuart
Tony Crook
Geoffrey Crossley
Anthony Denis Davidson
Colin Charles Houghton Davis
Tony Dean
Paul di Resta
Hugh Peter Martin Donnelly
Kenneth Henry Downing
Bernard Charles 'Bernie' Ecclestone
Guy Richard Goronwy Edwards
Victor Henry 'Vic' Elford
Paul Emery
Robert 'Bob' Evans
Jack Fairman
Alfred Lazarus 'Les Leston' Fingleston
John Fisher
Ron Flockhart
Philip Fotheringham-Parker
Joe Fry
Divina Mary Galica
Frederick Roberts 'Bob' Gerard
Peter Kenneth Gethin
Richard Gibson
Horace Gould
Keith Greene
Brian Gubby
Stanley Michael Bailey Hailwood
Bruce Halford
Duncan Hamilton
Lewis Carl Davidson Hamilton
David Hampshire
Thomas Cuthbert 'Cuth' Harrison
Brian Hart
Mike Hawthorn
Brian Henton
John Paul 'Johnny' Herbert
Damon Graham Devereux Hill
Norman Graham Hill
David Wishart Hobbs
James Simon Wallis Hunt
Robert McGregor Innes Ireland
Edmund 'Eddie' Irvine, Jr.
Chris Irwin
John James
Leslie Johnson
Thomas Kenrick Kavanagh 'Ken' Kavanagh
Rupert Keegan
Christopher J. Lawrence
Geoffrey Lees
Jackie Lewis
Stuart Nigel Lewis-Evans
Michael George Hartwell MacDowel
Lance Noel Macklin
Damien Magee
Nigel Ernest James Mansell
Leslie Marr
Anthony Ernest 'Tony' Marsh
Steve Matchett
Raymond Mays
Kenneth McAlpine
Perry McCarthy
Allan McNish
John Miles
Robin 'Monty' Montgomerie-Charrington
Dave Morgan
Bill Moss
Sir Stirling Moss
David Murray
John Brian Naylor
Timothy 'Tiff' Needell
Lando Norris
Rodney Nuckey
Keith Jack Oliver
Arthur Owen
Dr. Jonathan Charles Palmer
Jolyon Palmer
Michael Johnson Parkes
Reginald 'Tim' Parnell
Reginald 'Tim' Parnell
Reginald Harold Haslam Parnell
David Piper
Roger Dennistoun 'Dennis' Poore
David Prophet
Thomas Maldwyn Pryce
David Charles Purley
Ian Raby
Brian Herman Thomas Redman
Alan Rees
Lance Reventlow
John Rhodes
William Kenneth 'Ken' Richardson
John Henry Augustin Riseley-Prichard
Richard Robarts
Alan Rollinson
Tony Rolt
George Russell
Roy Francesco Salvadori
Brian Shawe-Taylor
Stephen South
Michael 'Mike' Spence
Alan Stacey
William Stevens
Ian Macpherson M Stewart
James Robert 'Jimmy' Stewart
Sir John Young Stewart
John Surtees
Andy Sutcliffe
Dennis Taylor
Henry Taylor
John Taylor
Michael Taylor
Trevor Taylor
Eric Thompson
Leslie Thorne
Desmond Titterington
Tony Trimmer
Peter Walker
Derek Stanley Arthur Warwick
John Marshall 'Wattie' Watson
Peter Westbury
Kenneth Wharton
Edward N. 'Ted' Whiteaway
Graham Whitehead
Peter Whitehead
Bill Whitehouse
Robin Michael Widdows
Mike Wilds
Jonathan Williams
Roger Williamson
Justin Wilson
Vic Wilson
The move to Ferrari would place Hawthorn amongst a whole lineup of great grand prix talents. But in a year that Alberto Ascari would go on to win his second-straight World Championship, it would be Hawthorn that would provide a performance for the ages.

Mike's talents at the wheel of a race car were certainly undeniable, especially after the 1952 season. However, in spite of his incredible performances it was also becoming quite clear those performances came as a result of him actually being interested in going racing. Otherwise, there was a tendency to be rather unspectacular.

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Formula One World Drivers' Champions
1950 G. Farina
1951 J. Fangio
1952 A. Ascari
1953 A. Ascari
1954 J. Fangio
1955 J. Fangio
1956 J. Fangio
1957 J. Fangio
1958 M. Hawthorn
1959 S. Brabham
1960 S. Brabham
1961 P. Hill, Jr
1962 N. Hill
1963 J. Clark, Jr.
1964 J. Surtees
1965 J. Clark, Jr.
1966 S. Brabham
1967 D. Hulme
1968 N. Hill
1969 S. Stewart
1970 K. Rindt
1971 S. Stewart
1972 E. Fittipaldi
1973 S. Stewart
1974 E. Fittipaldi
1975 A. Lauda
1976 J. Hunt
1977 A. Lauda
1978 M. Andretti
1979 J. Scheckter
1980 A. Jones
1981 N. Piquet
1982 K. Rosberg
1983 N. Piquet
1984 A. Lauda
1985 A. Prost
1986 A. Prost
1987 N. Piquet
1988 A. Senna
1989 A. Prost
1990 A. Senna
1991 A. Senna
1992 N. Mansell
1993 A. Prost
1994 M. Schumacher
1995 M. Schumacher
1996 D. Hill
1997 J. Villeneuve
1998 M. Hakkinen
1999 M. Hakkinen
2000 M. Schumacher
2001 M. Schumacher
2002 M. Schumacher
2003 M. Schumacher
2004 M. Schumacher
2005 F. Alonso
2006 F. Alonso
2007 K. Raikkonen
2008 L. Hamilton
2009 J. Button
2010 S. Vettel
2011 S. Vettel
2012 S. Vettel
2013 S. Vettel
2014 L. Hamilton
2015 L. Hamilton
2016 N. Rosberg
2017 L. Hamilton
2018 L. Hamilton
2019 L. Hamilton

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