PEOPLE: DANY HINDENOCH

Name: Dany Hindenoch
Nationality: France

Dany Hindenoch

Dany Hindenoch 

 © Inside F1, Inc.

Hindenoch and a school friend called Michel Hommel were both rallying fans and as Hommel had a little more money, Hindenoch ended up working as his mechanic in local events in the 1960s. They then switched to Renault 8 Gordini racing before Hommel decided that he wanted to start a magazine about motor racing and Hindenoch began working as a journalist instead. The publishing company was a precarious business and eventually Hindenoch decided he had had enough, sold his shares to Hommel and set up an agency for fashion models in Paris. He did some rally co-driving at the time and eventually decided that he wanted to be more involved in the sport again and was hired by the Simca-Chrysler company to work in its competition department. His first job was to organize the highly-successful Sunbeam Lotus effort in the World Rally Championship.

When the company was revamped as Talbot he became the coordinator of the successful World Rally Championship effort and then, in 1981, when Talbot decided to enter Grand Prix racing with the Ligier team, he was put in charge of the program. The plan was to run Matra V12 engines, badged as Talbots, but the team never really took off despite Jacques Laffite winning in the rain at the Austrian GP that year. The 1982 car - driven by Laffite and American Eddie Cheever - was not a success and at the end of the year Talbot decided it had wasted enough money and withdrew.

Hindenoch was given the task of trying to put together a Ligier Indycar team but there was not enough money available and so in 1984 he became the Ligier F1 team's press officer, running his own PR business but dealing with all of Ligier's media activities. Dany's WHO organization would later take on work with both Elf and Gauloises, helping to promote the La Filiere scheme which gave many young French drivers the chance to get into F1.

In 1992 the longtime Ligier team manager Jean-Pierre Paoli decided that he had had enough. The team was not successful and even Guy Ligier's interest was waning. Hindenoch became the Ligier team manager and helped to guide it through the upheavals after Ligier sold to Cyril de Rouvre, who sold to Flavio Briatore, who passed the team on to Tom Walkinshaw.

The arrival of the Scotsman was the end for Hindenoch. Tom wanted his own men and Dany was dropped. After having a rest for a few months Hindenoch began to work for Gauloises once again, promoting the company's activities in rally-raids with Jean-Louis Schlesser's unusual Buggies. In 1999 he returned full-time to F1 as the press officer for Gauloises but when the relationship with Prost finished at the end of the 2000 season Hindenoch again disappeared from F1 and concentrated his efforts on the raid rallying world.

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