Damon Hill has turned conventional wisdom on its head, by claiming that McLaren rejected him for 1998, rather than the other way around.


It was widely thought that Hill had refused McLaren's offer to partner Mika Hakkinen on financial grounds, but it appears that this was not necessarily the case. Although Hill was thought to have rejected the Woking team because he would have to take a pay cut, he has revealed that he was willing to take a performance-related deal with an up-front payment.


(I had to basically kick Ron [Dennis]'s door down,) said Damon, ( I was 'phoning him up in the shower, asking him why he wouldn't put me in his team, but he didn't want to know. I pulled out because I didn't want to be somewhere that didn't want me.)

(Ron always had that intention for Mika to win the championship, and you don't have to look past Melbourne this year to see that,) he continued, making reference to the "team orders" row which dominated the early races of 1998.


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