Hamann Motorsport founder Richard Hamann has passed away at the age of 53.

The sad news was first reported by our colleague (and friend) Jon Sibal who wrote poignantly that he was "in disbelief of this sad news...Richard certainly made a big impact in the scene and will surely be missed in the tuning world."

A press release by Hamann Motorsport GmbH, the tuning and racing company Hamann founded back in 1986, said that he died on March 17, 2011 due to a severe illness (lung cancer), one month shy of his 54th birthday.

The team has promised to run the company as per Hamann's wishes.

Hamann Motorsport has partcipated in over 700 races, with 300 podium finishes and 103 victories.

Gallery: Richard Hamann passes away

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