Karl Jochen Rindt (April 18, 1942 - September 5, 1970) was a racing driver. He posthumously won the Formula One World Drivers' Championship in 1970, after being killed in practice for the Italian Grand Prix.
Jochen Rindt was born in Mainz, Germany, but after his parents were killed in a bombing raid in the Second World War, he moved to live with his grandparents in Graz, Austria, where he grew up and started motor racing.
Despite being very successful in Formula 2 (by winning for instance the 1964 London Trophy), Rindt kept on choosing the wrong F1 cars. Rindt made his Formula One debut for Rob Walker Racing Team in the 1964 Austrian Grand Prix. It was to be his only Grand Prix of the year. From 1965 to 1967, Rindt raced for Cooper Car Company, scoring 32 points in 29 races. In 1968, Rindt raced for Brabham, but Rindt's season wasn't what he had hoped for, due to technical problems.
Finally, in 1969, Rindt moved to Lotus and it was with Lotus that Rindt's career took off. Rindt clinched the first Grand Prix victory of his career in the Grand Prix of the USA in Watkins Glen. Rindt finished that year with 22 points, giving him fourth place in the World Drivers Championship. Rindt's 1970 season started with a dramatic last corner win at Monaco. Thereafter armed with perhaps the greatest Formula one car of all time, the Lotus 72, Rindt won four more Grands Prix (The Netherlands, France, Britain and Germany) that year.
During practice for the 1970 Italian Grand Prix in Monza, near Milan, Jochen Rindt lost control of his car upon braking for the Parabolica, possibly one of his four wheel disc brakes failed, and his car darted left, straight into and under the barriers which were placed too high for the revolutionary wedge design of his Lotus 72. He was immediately rushed to hospital, but died on the way. Rindt had only recently acquiesed to wearing a simple lap belt, and had slid underneath where the belt buckle cut his throat. Because Rindt had won five of that year's ten Grands Prix, his lead in the World Drivers Championship had become unassailable, and Rindt became motor racing's first posthumous World Champion. Jochen Rindt won the championship that year, because his Lotus team mate, Emerson Fittipaldi won the following and next to last Grand Prix of the year at Watkins Glen, depriving Ferrari driver Jacky Ickx of the points he needed to win the crown himself.
- 61 Grand Prix starts (First in Austria 1964, last in Austria 1970)
- 6 victories (United States 1969, Monaco 1970, The Netherlands 1970, France 1970, Britain 1970 and Germany 1970)
- 13 podium finishes
- 21 point finishes
- 10 pole positions
- 3 fastest laps
- 107 points scored
Rindt per season
- 1964: no points
- 1965: 13th place, 4 points
- 1966: 3rd place, 22 points
- 1967: 13th place, 6 points
- 1968: 12th place, 8 points
- 1969: 4th place, 22 points
- 1970: World Champion, 45 points
- Grand Prix History - Hall of Fame, Jochen Rindt