Chris Amon: A quiet achiever
Search Driven for for sale
If you think of contrasting personalities, Lewis Hamilton and Chris Amon would come close to opposite extremes.
Lewis may have three world championship titles to his name already, and is well on the way to achieving his fourth. Amon on the other hand never won a F1 grand prix (he competed in 96 of them) let alone a world championship title.
And yet Amon was no stranger to podium finishes, had astounding victories in other international motorsport events such as Le Mans and Daytona, and was hailed this week as probably the best F1 driver never to win a grand prix.
His death at age 73 in Rotorua Hospital on Wednesday has prompted international tributes to a true gentleman of the sport.
While Lewis Hamilton flaunts his international lifestyle daily on social media, Amon managed to keep his private life quite separate from his professional roles.
But as anyone who ever met Chris Amon will testify, he was a nice guy who always had time to talk, especially about motorsport.
Sir Jackie Stewart wondered whether he was too nice a guy to win but then dismissed this notion saying Amon was a fully-fledged member of that famous grouping of F1 drivers that included Graham Hill, Jim Clark and Stewart himself.
It is perhaps in New Zealand that Amon’s true talent has been under-appreciated. But then part of that may have been because of Amon’s retiring personality, and his Kiwi humility.
Not that Amon was shy about articulating an opinion - his views about the current state of Formula One made news just weeks ago.
Someone who knew him on the international motorsport circuits, and during Amon’s long retirement back home was Driven motorsport columnist Bob McMurray. He pays a personal tribute to his late friend in today's Driven.