The place for respectful and reverent discussion of Reject drivers and teams, whether profiled or not as yet
by Bobby Doorknobs 25 Apr 2019, 05:02
Ex-BMW works touring car and F2 driver Hubert Hahne has passed away after suffering from dementia for the past while.

Hahne was a frontrunner in saloons, winning the over-2-litre class of the European Touring Car Challenge in 1966, and he was the first person to lap the Nordschleife in under ten minutes in a tintop that same year (under racing conditions anyway). He was also a staple of BMW's 1.6-litre F2 project in the late '60s, which accounts for three of his five total world championship Grand Prix appearances, all in the German Grand Prix. His highlight in single seaters would surely be his runner-up placing in the 1969 European F2 Trophy where he also finished first among the non-graded drivers in the Hockenheim and Nuerburgring rounds.

There seem to be conflicting (or perhaps intertwined) reasons given for Hahne's retirement from the sport in 1970: That year he bought a March 701 to have a proper crack at F1 racing only to log a DNQ at Hockenheim. He was none too pleased at this result given that this car had won a few races in the capable hands of Jackie Stewart and Chris Amon, so he threatened legal action for what can probably be described as poor quality assurance. Hahne came to an agreement with Max Mosley whereby they would set up a test at Silverstone where Hahne's lap times could be compared to another driver: a young Swedish fellow named Ronnie Peterson. The Scandinavian obliged with a lap time two seconds faster than what Hahne could manage, and the lawsuit was dropped.

It was either that or the death of his close friend Jochen Rindt (or both) that convinced Hahne to pack it in; the March passed into the hands of the Shell Arnold Team (and it's the same car that Jean-Pierre Jarier would later drive in the 1971 Italian GP), and Hahne now had time to devote to his other interests, such as his garage in Essen.

His brother Armin and nephew Joerg van Ommen are also accomplished ex-touring car drivers.

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