Ex-Toyota F1 driver McNish calls it quits on illustrious career

Allan McNish spent 2002 as F1 driver with Toyota

Allan McNish spent 2002 as F1 driver with Toyota

Former Toyota F1 driver and three time Le Mans winner and endurance World Champion Allan McNish announced his retirement from racing on Tuesday, saying it was time to go after other personal goals.

The Scot, who turns 44 this month, said that he was following the example of compatriot and triple Formula 1 World Champion Jackie Stewart who quit at the top, in 1973, after winning his third title.

“As a racing driver it’s important to stop at the right time when I’m still fast and capable of doing the job and the timing feels right after winning Le Mans for a third time this year and claiming the World title,” he said in a statement.

McNish, who will continue to work with the Audi Le Mans factory team in various roles as well as devoting time to media and management, said he was ready to hand over to a younger generation.

“I’ve won the Championships and races I wanted to win and frankly there’s no better way to end my Audi sportscar race career than going out as a World Champion,” said McNish.

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“My fellow Scot and mentor Jackie Stewart knew when to get into things but also knew when to get out and he has taught me that lesson.”

McNish, who raced for Toyota in Formula 1 in 2002 without scoring a point, won 19 times with Audi teams and also took three American Le Mans titles.

He won the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1998, 2008 and this year and also had some big accidents at the Sarthe circuit including a spectacular one in 2011 that destroyed the car.

“There are some great new drivers coming through and they need an opportunity just like I did,” said the Scot. (Reuters)

  • McLarenfan

    A shame as Alan is a solid driver who should have had a longer time in F1. At times F1 can be cruel as a decent driver has a c**p car and they just can’t make their mark, teams who could produce the machine money wise like Toyota haven’t been able as they don’t have the key design group even with the amount of cash they aimed at the sport.

  • O’Ferrari

    Pity. I was looking forward to seeing him smash StevetheGreat.

  • Ty

    Wasn’t this guy also Senna’s test driver at McLaren back in 1991? Talk about hanging in there.