James Hunt (James Simon Wallis Hunt)

James Hunt

James Hunt

James Simon Wallis Hunt (29 August 1947 – 15 June 1993) was a British racing driver who won the Formula One World Championship in 1976. After retiring from racing in 1979, Hunt became a media commentator and businessman.  Beginning his racing career in touring car racing, Hunt progressed into Formula Three where he attracted the attention of the Hesketh Racing team and was soon taken under their wing. Hunt’s often action-packed exploits on track earned him the nickname “Hunt the Shunt”, “shunt” being a British term that means “crash”. Hunt entered Formula One in 1973, driving a March 731 entered by the Hesketh Racing team. He went on to win for Hesketh, driving their own Hesketh 308 car, in both World Championship and non-Championship races, before joining the McLaren team at the end of 1975. In his first year with McLaren, Hunt won the 1976 World Drivers’ Championship, and he remained with the team for a further two years, although with less success, before moving to the Wolf team in early 1979. Following a string of races in which he failed to finish, Hunt retired from driving halfway through the 1979 season.  After retiring from motor racing, he established a career commenting on Grands Prix for the BBC. He was known for his knowledge, insights, dry sense of humour and his criticism of drivers who, he believed, were not trying hard enough, which in the process brought him a whole new fanbase.  Hunt died from a heart attack aged 45. He was inducted into the Motor Sport Hall of Fame on 29 January 2014.

More Images

  • Grand Prix of Great Britain -

  • 1978 Austrian Grand Prix. -


  • August, 29, 1947
  • Belmont, Sutton, Surrey, England


  • June, 15, 1993
  • United Kingdom
  • Wimbledon, London, England

Cause of Death

  • heart attack


  • Putney Vale Cemetery and Crematorium
  • Wimbledon, London, England
  • United Kingdom

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