Happy Birthday James - we all know that you would celebrate the occasion
Born in Belmont (UK) on 29 August 1947, James Hunt would have been 72 today had he not succumbed to a heart attack back in 1993... and we all know that he would celebrate the occasion with a champagne-flowing party packed with beautiful people.
Rightfully so, much has been made of the playboy Englishman's triumph over Niki Lauda in that unforgettable 1976 Formula 1 World Championship season. The excellent movie "rush" gave a brief glimpse into his life behind the scenes.
It is no secret that James, like many of his peers at the time, was not exactly loaded with money and scrapped his way in the minor leagues.
But the Englishman's unique character and movie star look caught the eye of motor racing aficionado Lord Alexander Hesketh who att the age of 23 and a small fortune at his disposal.
The young maverick peer lived by the motto: "A lot of people want to make a lot of money to store it away. I want to make a lot of money to spend it. I like spending to create something which is entirely my own and this is why I have the racing team."
This was exactly what James needed at a very low point in his career which had always been hampered by lack of big budget. With fun-loving but remarkably serious Lord Hesketh, the 26-year-old driver was thrust into the Formula 1 limelight where, history shows, he remained for a half dozen years.
He was always thankful that survived the sport's most dangerous era. Eleven drivers perished in F1 alone during the decade Hunt was in and around the top flight. Famously, he won the F1 drivers' title in 1976.Keep reading