• Top ten ... F1 all-rounders

Mixed disciplines

Laurence Edmondson June 4, 2013

With the news that Robert Kubica is scoring victories in the WRC2, ESPN takes a look at grand prix drivers who excelled outside of Formula One

Sir Stirling Moss on his way to victory at the 1955 Mille Miglia © Getty Images
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Sir Stirling Moss

It's almost easier to name the cars Moss didn't drive during his career than the cars he did, and remarkably he was successful in most of them. He may not have won a world championship in F1, but his talent was never in question and with 16 wins in five different makes of cars in F1 alone he was always able to adapt to the four wheels around him. Perhaps his greatest achievement was victory at the 1955 Mille Miglia at an average speed of 97.96mph over 992 miles on gruelling Italian roads. He was hugely successful in GT cars but would try his hand at anything, from the Alpine Rally in a Sunbeam-Talbot to a successful land-speed record attempt at Bonneville in a 1500cc MG. His life-threatening accident at Goodwood in 1962 put an end to his career but by that point he had a 40% win record across all disciplines (not including his successful hill-climb results in his father's BMW 328). He made a brief comeback in the British Touring Car Championship for Audi in 1980 but described it as "a big mistake" and instead settled into the more gentlemanly pastime of racing historics.

Graham Hill

As the only driver ever to win the Indianapolis 500, Le Mans and the Formula One drivers' title, Hill fully deserves his place on this list. His career spanned 18 years with two world championships in Formula One and victory at Le Mans in 1970 on his tenth appearance at the 24 hour race. His Indy 500 victory came in 1966 on his debut at the race when he inherited the victory with just ten laps to go after fellow 'rookie' Jackie Stewart retired. During his earlier career he also took part in the British Touring Car Championship and finished third in 1963 despite balancing it alongside his defence of the F1 world championship, not to mention an attempt at the Le Mans 24 Hours in a gas-turbine powered car.

Jim Clark

Arguably one of the greatest Formula One drivers in the history of the sport, Clark did not restrict his talent solely to grand prix racing. He made four appearances at Le Mans in various classes in his early career but it was in F1 and in the United States where he really made his name. With Lotus he won two world championships and became the first Briton to win the Indianapolis 500 in 1965 after skipping that year's Monaco Grand Prix to take part. He also drove a Lotus Cortina to overall victory in the 1964 British Touring Car Championship and later took his trusty Cortina rallying at the 1966 RAC Rally. He also dabbled in NASCAR between 1966 and 1968 but lost his life in a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim. His death shocked the motorsport world and highlighted the dangers of racing in any category, no matter how talented the driver.

John Surtees in action at Monza © Getty Images
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John Surtees

Surtees is the only man to win the world championship on both two wheels and four. Having been brought up as the son of a three-time British sidecar champion, he was destined to race bikes. He won his first race when he was 17, and by the time he was 26 he had won seven world championships with the famous Italian MV Agusta team. In 1959 - before he had won his final title - his universal appeal had earned him a few tests in cars, and he was entered into a race at Goodwood in an F3 Cooper by Ken Tyrrell. Surtees impressed, and in 1960 made the switch in to cars full time. In just his second championship race he scored a podium driving for Lotus and his first win came in 1963 when he made the switch to Ferrari. A year later he was world champion with Ferrari but his exploits on four wheels were not just limited to F1 and he finished on the podium at the Le Mans 24 Hours in the same year. In 1965 he suffered life-threatening injuries testing a CanAm car in Canada but returned to the track in 1966 to win again for Ferrari before he left on bad terms. He took part in one race in the USAC National Championship in 1967 but his focus was on Formula One and he went on to found his own race team in 1970.

Mike Hailwood

Mike Hailwood was considered among the all-time greats of motorbike racing, winning nine world championships at 250cc, 350cc and 500cc in a seven-year period between 1961 and 1967, as well as 75 grand prix. His reputation was further enhanced by his success at the legendary Isle of Man TT, where he won 12 times, including three wins in 1961 alone. In 1968 his team, Honda, withdrew from racing but fully expecting to return, paid Hailwood a £50,000 retainer not to ride for anyone else. Rather than sit on the sidelines, he turned his attention to motor racing. He had dabbled with F1 in the mid 1960s, with limited success, but while not coming close to repeating his record on bikes, he became a respected driver. In his first attempt at Le Mans in 1963 he finished third driving a Ford GT40 with David Hobbs. Podiums followed in Formula One and in 1972 he also added the F2 championship to his list of honours.

Mario Andretti

Andretti enjoyed considerable success on both sides of the Atlantic in a career that spanned over three decades. After immigrating to the USA from Italy as a teenager, he started his career on dirt ovals and worked his way up the ranks to IndyCars. He finished third on his Indy 500 debut in 1965 and won it in 1969. By this stage he had already competed in two Le Mans 24 Hours and won the Sebring 12 Hours. In the late 1960s and early 1970s he continued to commute across the Atlantic as he gained a foothold in Formula One. His first F1 victory came in 1971 with Ferrari but it was not until 1978 that he finally became world champion with Lotus. His last F1 races were in 1982 with Ferrari, but he raced on in Champ Cars until 1994. His best result at Le Mans came with a second place in 1995 but he made three further appearances in 1996, 1997 and 2000.

Mondeo Man: Nigel Mansell poses with his BTCC car © Sutton Images
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Nigel Mansell

His early career was dedicated to rising up the ranks in Formula One, but after becoming world champion in 1992 he started to diversify. In 1993 he went stateside and won the Champ Car championship at his first attempt, with a third place finish at the Indy 500. He struggled to defend his title in 1994 but did return to F1 for four races, taking his 31st and final victory at the season-ending Australian Grand Prix. A full return to F1 with McLaren in 1995 beckoned, but he couldn't fit in the cockpit early in the season and after two unsuccessful outings at Imola and Barcelona he retired from F1 for good. Rather than turn his back on the sport completely, however, he drove in the British Touring Car Championship in 1998, following a brief fling with the series a few years earlier, and in the late 2000s drove in GT cars and in the Le Mans Series. In 2010 he embarked on the Le Mans 24 Hours with his sons Leo and Greg but crashed after suffering a puncture just 17 minutes in.

Dan Gurney

He started out racing a Triumph TR2 in the USA, but as the years passed the cars became more exotic and Gurney more successful, earning an invitation to race in Europe for Ferrari in 1958. And so began a long Formula One career, which he kicked off with second place behind team-mate Tony Brooks at the German Grand Prix. However, he moved to BRM for 1960 and then on to Porsche for 1961. During this period he continued to commute across the Atlantic and regularly took part in NASCAR events and the Indy 500, boosting his popularity at home. He was also a Le Mans 24 Hours stalwart, taking part in 10 consecutive races from 1958 to 1967, when he finally won it. He won four races in F1 and his popularity grew so much back in his homeland that Car and Driver magazine promoted the idea of him running for President of the USA in 1964. Unfortunately he was too young to stand.

Jacky Ickx and Claude Brasseur with their Mercedes G-Wagen ahead of the 1983 Paris Dakar © Getty Images
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Jacky Ickx

Although he never won a Formula One world championship, Ickx is arguably one of the greatest all-rounders of all time. During his career he finished runner-up twice in F1, won the Le Mans 24 Hours six times, won a CanAm championship, took victory on his debut at the Bathurst 1000 and won the infamous Rally Paris-Dakar. In total he took eight victories in F1 and came closest to a title in 1970 when he finished five points adrift of posthumous champion Jochen Rindt - a title he later admitted he would not have wanted to take from Rindt given the circumstances. His six wins at Le Mans spanned three decades with victories in 1969, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1981 and 1982, the last four coming with Porsche. His win at the Paris Dakar came behind the wheel of a Mercedes G-Wagen in 1983 and he then persuaded Porsche to compete in the north African rally with a Porsche 959 built up to Group B specification. He remains one of the all-time legends of motorsport and in 1991 consulted Mazda to victory at the Le Mans 24 Hours

Jacques Villeneuve

Villeneuve was already a Champ Car champion and Indy 500 winner when he arrived in Formula One in 1996. In his second year at Williams he added an F1 championship to his achievements but it proved to be the high point of his career. Midway through 2006 he was out of a drive in F1, but still had the desire to go racing and took up the opportunity to try his hand at NASCAR. He also signed up to Peugeot's Le Mans project and finished second at the 24 hour race in 2008. He then took part in various other series, including the Speedcar Series - essentially stock cars on race tracks - the Spa-Francorchamps 24 Hours and a series of NASCAR events. Although he never reached the peak of his earlier career his desire and ability to go racing in various forms of motorsport makes him stand out among F1 drivers from the modern era.

Laurence Edmondson is deputy editor of ESPNF1

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Laurence Edmondson is deputy editor of ESPNF1 Laurence Edmondson grew up on a Sunday afternoon diet of Ayrton Senna and Nigel Mansell and first stepped in the paddock as a Bridgestone competition finalist in 2005. He worked for ITV-F1 after graduating from university and has been ESPNF1's deputy editor since 2010