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Nostalgia
Topic

Nostalgia

Hungary 1997: Heartbreak for Damon Hill

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Hungary 1997: Heartbreak for Damon Hill
By:
Translated by: Rachit Thukral
Aug 11, 2017, 7:10 AM

20 years ago, then defending champion Damon Hill was on course to take an underdog victory for Arrows at the Hungarian Grand Prix, only for a technical problem to beset him with less than a handful of laps to go

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Qualifying

Qualifying
1/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Ferrari's Michael Schumacher claimed pole position in qualifying with a time of 1m14.672s, edging out title rival and Williams driver Jacques Villeneuve.

Qualifying

Qualifying
2/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

To much surprise, Damon Hill managed to qualify his mediocre Arrows-Yamaha in third place. His previous best qualifying result of the year was ninth.

Grid

Grid
3/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

Formation lap

Formation lap
4/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

The start

The start
5/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

The start

The start
6/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Taking advantage of Villeneuve's bad start, Hill sprinted to second place.

Race

Race
7/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

The Englishman resisted an early challenge from Eddie Irvine before setting off to chase Michael Schumacher, who had disappeared into the distance.

Race

Race
8/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Race

Race
9/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Schumacher, then only a double world champion, could see Hill closing in. While the Goodyear tyres on Schumacher's Ferrari struggled in the Hungaroring heat, Hill was able to enjoy better grip from his Bridgestone-shod Arrows.

Race

Race
10/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

By lap six, Hill had closed the gap to Schumacher to a car length.

Race

Race
11/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

Five laps later, he dived down the inside of Schumacher at turn 1 to take the lead.

Race

Race
12/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Schumacher eventually fell out of contention for victory as high tyre degradation forced him onto a three-stop strategy.

Race

Race
13/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

McLaren's Mika Hakkinen was running in third place until a hydraulic issue forced his retirement.

Race

Race
14/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

After Ferrari's first stop, Villeneuve was back into second place - the position he started the race from.

Race

Race
15/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

However, after getting indulged in a rivalry with the second McLaren of David Coulthard, he fell considerably behind Hill.

Race

Race
16/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Race

Race
17/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Like teammate Hakkinen, Coulthard also retired from the race on lap 65 of 77.

Race

Race
18/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

At 35 seconds, Hill's lead looked insurmountable with three laps to go.

Race

Race
19/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

Just when the victory looked in sight, Hill's Arrows began to slow down with a hydraulics failure, leaving the Englishman with a stuck third gear and an intermittent throttle.

Race

Race
20/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Villeneuve rapidly charged down Hill's ailing car, overtaking him on the fourth corner of the final lap.

Race

Race
21/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Hill managed to limp the car to second place, which was nevertheless a spectacular result for Arrows.

Race

Race
22/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

11 seconds behind, Johhny Herbert crossed the chequered flag to take the final spot on the podium.

Post-race

Post-race
23/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

Despite losing the victory, a second place result brought much joy for Hill.

Podium

Podium
24/26

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Two former teammates celebrate on the podium. Villeneuve was particularly elated with his result, as his title rival Schumacher could finish no higher than fourth.

Post-race

Post-race
25/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

Hill alongside Arrows team boss Tom Walkinshaw

26/26

Photo by: Sutton Images

It was eighth and the final podium for the Arrows squad, which would disappear from the grid in 2002.

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Damon Hill
Teams Arrows
Author Fabien Gaillard