A day after Nicholas Latifi scored the latest victory for DAMS in F2 competition, the team revealed that its founder Jean-Paul Driot – pictured at right, above, celebrating his team’s Formula E championship in 2017 with co-principal Alain Prost — has died.
“It is with great sadness that Driot Associés Motor Sport (DAMS) announces its founder and owner, Jean-Paul Driot, has passed away at the age of 68,” the team said in a statement. “Jean-Paul lost an ongoing battle with illness, which he had fought in recent months. We wish our sincerest condolences to his wife Geneviève and two sons Olivier and Gregory.
“Under Jean-Paul’s guidance, DAMS has won 13 drivers’ and 12 teams’ championships, including 147 races in Formula 3000, Formula Renault 3.5, GP3 Series, GP2 Series, Formula 2 and Formula E, since the team was created in 1988. Jean-Paul has also overseen the progression of many talented young drivers on their route to Formula 1.
“The entire DAMS team wishes to dedicate Nicholas Latifi’s win and Sergio Sette Camara’s podium in Hungary to Jean-Paul’s memory.”
Driot had managed the team since its debut in F3000 in 1989. Focusing mainly on single-seater championships, more than 31 former DAMS drivers have reached Formula 1, including current racers Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen, Pierre Gasly, Carlos Sainz and Alexander Albon.
DAMS has also competed at Le Mans eight times, being based since its foundation at La Sarthe, near the 24 Hours circuit.