DAMS founder and e.dams team principal Jean-Paul Driot dies aged 68
||Sunday, August 4th 2019, 12:30 GMT
DAMS founder and Nissan e.dams Formula E team principal Jean-Paul Driot has died, aged 68.
A statement from his team, which has played a key role in the careers of many Formula 1 drivers and has won titles across several junior single-seater series and FE, announced on Sunday that Driot had passed away after an ongoing battle with illness.
DAMS has also dedicated its driver Nicholas Latifi's Formula 2 victory and Sergio Sette Camara's podium from the Hungarian Grand Prix support races to Driot.
The Frenchman set up his eponymous team - Driot Associes Motor Sport - at the end of 1988 and it made its debut in Formula 3000 the following year.
More than 30 DAMS drivers went on to race in F1 - including five of the current grid: Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen, Pierre Gasly, Carlos Sainz Jr and Alexander Albon - and Driot has remained the figurehead of the team throughout.
Driot's team has won 13 drivers' and 12 teams' championships and has claimed 147 victories across various series including Formula 3000 and Formula Renault 3.5, plus official feeder categories Formula 2 and Formula 3 (and their predecessors GP2 and GP3).
Under Driot's stewardship, DAMS also masterminded the title-winning French A1 Grand Prix effort.
Together with F1 legend Alain Prost, Driot established the e.dams FE team, which won two teams' titles and a drivers' championship when partnered with Renault in the electric single-seater series, and now runs the Nissan entry.
"It is with great sadness that Driot Associes Motor Sport (DAMS) announces its founder and owner, Jean-Paul Driot, passed away at the age of 68," read a DAMS team statement.
"Jean-Paul lost an ongoing battle with illness, which he had fought in recent months.
"We wish our sincerest condolences to his wife Genevieve and two sons Olivier and Gregory."
A statement released by Renault said it would remember Driot "with fondness".
"We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of our friend, Jean-Paul Driot. The sport has lost a spirited man, one who identified and nurtured its future champions. He was a pragmatic racer, driven by passion, ready to take risks and relish every moment. His enthusiasm was absolutely and inspiringly refreshing," read the statement.
"Our collaboration in many forms was always full of emotion and many, many successes. We will remember him with fondness and cherish the wins, podiums and fun we enjoyed together.
"Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time."