John Michael Hawthorn (10 April 1929 – 22 January 1959) was a racing driver, born in Mexborough, Yorkshire, England, and educated at Ardingly College, West Sussex.

Racing careerEdit

Mike Hawthorn made his competition debut driving his 1934 Riley Ulster Imp, KV 9475, winning the 1,100 c.c. sports car class at the Brighton Speed Trials on 2 September 1950.[2] In 1951, driving a 1½-litre T.T. Riley, he entered the Motor Sport Brooklands Memorial Trophy, a season-long contest run at Goodwood, winning it by one point.[3] He also won the Ulster Trophy Handicap at Dundrod and the Leinster Trophy at Wicklow that year.[4]

Hawthorn made his Formula One debut at the 1952 Belgian Grand Prix, finishing in fourth place. He won his first Grand Prix, at the ninth attempt, at the 1953 French Grand Prix at Reims.

In 1955, Hawthorn was the winner of the 24 hours of Le Mans race, despite being involved in the terrible crash that killed 83 spectators and fellow racer Pierre Levegh. In 1957, Hawthorn joined the Ferrari factory team, and soon became friends with Peter Collins, a fellow Englishman and Ferrari team driver. During the 1958 racing season, the two Englishmen became engaged in a rivalry with Luigi Musso, another Ferrari driver, that spurred all three in a fierce competition for prize money. Hawthorn was the winner of the fateful 1958 French Grand Prix at Rheims, in which Musso was killed while holding second place. Stirling Moss, driving for Vanwall, eventually took second place in the race, with Collins coming in fifth. [1][2] Hawthorn drove his Ferrari at the 1958 Argentine Grand Prix. Hawthorn was the winner of the 1958 Championship. With only one win that year against four wins of Stirling Moss, he benefited greatly from the gentlemanliness of Moss as shown at the Portuguese Grand Prix at Porto. Hawthorn was disqualified for pushing his car, against the rules, on the way to a second place finish. Moss interceded on Hawthorn's behalf and the decision was ultimately reversed. Those second place points at Porto contributed to Hawthorn winning the championship with a season total just one point more than that of Moss.

After winning the title, Hawthorn immediately announced his retirement from Formula One, having been badly affected by the death of his close friend and Ferrari team mate Peter Collins in that year's German Grand Prix.

Rivalry with Luigi MussoEdit

Many years after the death of Mike Hawthorn, Fiamma Breschi, Luigi Musso's girlfriend at the time of his death, revealed the nature of Musso's rivalry with fellow Ferrari drivers Mike Hawthorn and Collins in a television documentary, The Secret Life of Enzo Ferrari. Breschi recalled that the antagonism between Musso and the two English drivers, encouraged all three to take more risks:

"The Englishmen (Hawthorn and Collins) had an agreement," she says. "Whichever of them won, they would share the winnings equally. It was the two of them against Luigi, who was not part of the agreement. Strength comes in numbers, and they were united against him. This antagonism was actually favourable rather than damaging to Ferrari. The faster the drivers went, the more likely it was that a Ferrari would win." Breschi related that Musso was in debt at the time of his death, and the money for winning the 1958 French Grand Prix (traditionally the largest monetary prize of the season), was all-important to him.

After visiting the mortally-wounded Musso in hospital, Breschi returned to her hotel, where she and the rest of the Ferrari team were informed by the team manager that afternoon that Musso had died. By the end of that year Collins and Hawthorn were also dead, and Breschi could not suppress a feeling of release. "I had hated them both," she said, "first because I was aware of certain facts that were not right, and also because when I came out of the hospital and went back to the hotel, I found them in the square outside the hotel, laughing and playing a game of football with an empty beer can. So when they died, too, it was liberating for me. Otherwise I would have had unpleasant feelings towards them forever. This way I could find a sense of peace."[5]


Hawthorn had previously lost a kidney to infection and began suffering problems with his remaining kidney in 1955. He was expected at the time to live only a few more years.[6]

A matter of only months into his retirement, on 22 January 1959, Hawthorn died in a road accident on the A3 bypass near Guildford driving his British Racing Green highly tuned Jaguar 3.4-litre sedan (now known as the 3.4 Mk 1). The cause of the accident is still unknown, suggested causes being driver error, mechanical failure, or blackout. There is evidence that Hawthorn had recently suffered blackouts, perhaps because of kidney failure, that might well have caused the accident.[7]

In Farnham, the town where he lived up to the time of his death, there is a street named Mike Hawthorn Drive (off Dogflud Way). It was also in this town that Hawthorn ran The Tourist Trophy Garage. Jaguars, Rileys, Fiats, and Ferraris were serviced and sold from there.

There is a corner named after him at the Croft racing circuit, at Croft on Tees in North Yorkshire.

Hawthorn Memorial TrophyEdit

The Hawthorn Memorial Trophy has been awarded to the most successful British or Commonwealth F1 driver every year since 1959.

List of winnersEdit

That season's World Champion is in bold.

* In 1979 the trophy was not given to Gilles Villeneuve, a Canadian driver, who finished the season as runner-up, but ahead of Alan Jones who finished third.

Career ResultsEdit

Complete Formula One results
Year 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Pts Pos
1952 Flag of Switzerland 48-star U S flag Flag of Belgium Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of the Netherlands Flag of Italy 10 5th
4th Ret 3rd 4th Ret
1953 Flag of Argentina 48-star U S flag Flag of the Netherlands Flag of Belgium Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of Switzerland Flag of Italy 19 (27) 4th
4th 4th 6th 1st 5th 3rd 3rd 4th
1954 Flag of Argentina 48-star U S flag Flag of Belgium Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of Switzerland Flag of Italy Flag of Spain 1945 1977 24.643 3rd
DSQ 4th[1] Ret 2nd 2nd[1] Ret 2nd 1st
1955 Flag of Argentina Flag of Monaco 48-star U S flag Flag of Belgium Flag of the Netherlands Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of Switzerland Flag of Italy Flag of Spain 1945 1977 0 NC
Ret Ret 7th C 6th[2] C C 10th C
1956 Flag of Argentina Flag of Monaco 48-star U S flag Flag of Belgium Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of Italy 4 12th
3rd DNS DNS 10th[3] Ret
1957 Flag of Argentina Flag of Monaco 48-star U S flag Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Abruzzo bandiera Flag of Italy 13 4th
Ret Ret 4th 3rd 2nd 6th
1958 Flag of Argentina Flag of Monaco Flag of the Netherlands 48-star U S flag Flag of Belgium Flag of France Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of Germany Flag of Portugal Flag of Italy Flag of Morocco 42 (49) 1st
3rd Ret 5th 2nd 1st 2nd Ret 2nd 2nd 2nd

Symbol Meaning Symbol Meaning
1stWinner Ret Retired
2ndPodium finish DSQ Disqualified
3rd DNQ Did not qualify
5thPoints finish DNPQ Did not pre-qualify
14thNon-points finish TD Test driver
NCNon-classified finish (<90% race distance) DNS Did not start
ItalicsScored point(s) for Fastest Lap [+] More Symbols
  1. 1.0 1.1 Shared drive with José Froilán González
  2. Shared drive with Eugenio Castellotti
  3. Shared drive with Harry Schell
V T E List of World Drivers' Champions
1950: Giuseppe Farina
1951: Juan Manuel Fangio
1952: Alberto Ascari
1953: Alberto Ascari
1954: Juan Manuel Fangio
1955: Juan Manuel Fangio
1956: Juan Manuel Fangio
1957: Juan Manuel Fangio
1958: Mike Hawthorn
1959: Jack Brabham
1960: Jack Brabham
1961: Phil Hill
1962: Graham Hill
1963: Jim Clark
1964: John Surtees
1965: Jim Clark
1966: Jack Brabham
1967: Denny Hulme
1968: Graham Hill
1969: Jackie Stewart
1970: Jochen Rindt
1971: Jackie Stewart
1972: Emerson Fittipaldi
1973: Jackie Stewart
1974: Emerson Fittipaldi
1975: Niki Lauda
1976: James Hunt
1977: Niki Lauda
1978: Mario Andretti
1979: Jody Scheckter
1980: Alan Jones
1981: Nelson Piquet
1982: Keke Rosberg
1983: Nelson Piquet
1984: Niki Lauda
1985: Alain Prost
1986: Alain Prost
1987: Nelson Piquet
1988: Ayrton Senna
1989: Alain Prost
1990: Ayrton Senna
1991: Ayrton Senna
1992: Nigel Mansell
1993: Alain Prost
1994: Michael Schumacher
1995: Michael Schumacher
1996: Damon Hill
1997: Jacques Villeneuve
1998: Mika Häkkinen
1999: Mika Häkkinen
2000: Michael Schumacher
2001: Michael Schumacher
2002: Michael Schumacher
2003: Michael Schumacher
2004: Michael Schumacher
2005: Fernando Alonso
2006: Fernando Alonso
2007: Kimi Räikkönen
2008: Lewis Hamilton
2009: Jenson Button
2010: Sebastian Vettel
2011: Sebastian Vettel
2012: Sebastian Vettel
2013: Sebastian Vettel
2014: Lewis Hamilton
2015: Lewis Hamilton
2016: Nico Rosberg
2017: Lewis Hamilton
2018: Lewis Hamilton
2019: Lewis Hamilton

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