Lewis Hamilton paid tribute to former Mercedes executive Juergen Hubbert who passed away earlier this week aged 81.
A long-standing employee of Daimler-Benz, Hubbert rose through the ranks to take the reins of Mercedes in 1987.
But his name became familiar with racing fans when he oversaw the German manufacturer's return to Formula 1 as an engine supplier and partner to McLaren in the 1990s.
As Mercedes' head figure, Hubbert was credited with rejuvenating the company's customer base through its successful involvement in motorsports and in Grand Prix racing in particular.
"Deeply saddened to hear the news of our friend and family member Jurgen," Hamilton wrote on Instagram.
"He was such a racer at heart and I enjoyed our chats and his enthusiasm for racing. His commitment to Mercedes and the team over the years was inspiring."
Formula 1 chief executive Stefano Domenicali also honoured Hubbert's memory.
"All of us at Formula 1 are deeply saddened to hear that Jurgen Hubbert has passed away," said the Italian. "He was an incredible man and a friend and he will be greatly missed. My thoughts are with his family at this time."
It is with deep sadness that we learned of the passing of former Daimler Board of Management member Professor Juergen Hubbert.
Juergen was a true friend and supporter of the team, and played a crucial role in Mercedes motorsport history. pic.twitter.com/SY9u7ppVT1
— Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team (@MercedesAMGF1) January 15, 2021
Mercedes chairman Ola Källenius also offered a heartfelt tribute to the company's former leader.
"Juergen Hubbert was Mister Mercedes. With integrity, innovative spirit and great success, he shaped Mercedes-Benz forever,” he said.
"Under his responsibility, a historic product offensive was launched with groundbreaking vehicles such as the A- and M-Class.
"As a leader, he was able to integrate and motivate his teams with a passion for technology and the highest standards for himself. He is forever assured of the appreciation of the entire Mercedes family.
"In gratitude for his many years of good work, we will honour his memory. On behalf of the entire Board of Management of Daimler AG, I send our condolences to his family and relatives.
"We mourn a great personality and a great person."