Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Celebrate over sixty years of F1 - your memories, experiences and opinions.
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EagleF1-27
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby EagleF1-27 »

Trouble with F1 cars, by their very nature they are designed at the limit of whats possible to save weight, but yet have enough strength to survive a crash. It is possible to build one that would be indestructible if it had to weigh at least the same as a family car. Trouble is at the speeds they race and the momentum such a vehicle would have, it would survive but the driver would be mashed against the inside of the cockpit! Thats why they design them so that during an accident pieces fall off to reduce the momentum, that causes whole new problems though as Senna found out when a piece of the suspension went through his helmet.
I also remember vividly watching the race on TV with my sister, I was about 18 at the time, and saying out loud I dont think he will be racing for a while. Fully of course expecting him to survive, as apart from Ratzenberger the day before, we were in a period of F1 where no driver had died for over a decade. So it was total shock when we heard later that evening that he had been killed. The fact that he was such a skilled 3 times champion made it even more so.
I also remember the disbelief hearing about the crash the day before (at the time I dont think qualifying was broadcast on the BBC so didnt see it) and the death of a relatively unknown driver.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby madbrad »

Well we're upon yet another anniversary, boy, seems like yesterday. 18 years, sounds so far back. I often reflect on that weekend, F1's darkest hour, and have to fight down the chestnut growing in my throat from turning to tears, and a dark pit in the stomach. Same as whenever I type a post about it, like now. It doesn't fade with the passing years. There's no way I can ever imagine how Adriane felt, watching, denying, hoping, surrealism, and poor dear Roland, he didn't deserve such violence. And Rubens, with possibly the worst looking shunt, must have survivor's guilt, I don't know, it's all just too much to get my head around.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby LRW »

It is always horrific when someone dies way before their time, and I cant imagine the pain and torment this did to the Family of Senna.

But I do think when Famous people die young, it tends to glorify their achievements and elevate their place in history, compared to if they had continued living.

Senna was a great driver, Yes. But was he a God like legend that everyone praises him for...... er, no.

I know I'll get flamed for this, but it is my honest opinion.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby NocturnalTendencies »

I watched Senna tonight, he was such a great man.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby geetface9 »

Unfortunately we learn new things through failure...failure that sometimes mean someone dies. I'm glad newey and williams stuck around.
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Re: Roland Ratzenberger & Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby andrew »

What about Roland Raztenberger? The guy was only just getting started in F1. So much unrealised potential.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby Jabberwocky »

I can not find any pre F1 stats about him. apart from he came from a poor background. He was prepping the cars of the people he was racing against to make enough to go racing.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby andrew »

I read that his pre-F1 days had quite a few flashes of promise but the teams he raced for wern't the best. Still tragic no matter which way you cut it.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby Jabberwocky »

I am not saying it was not tragic, I was just wondering how good he was
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby LewEngBridewell »

I first posted in this thread a year ago...but at almost quarter to 4 in the morning! My golly, that must've been a late night out. :eek:

Back to more serious matters, RIP Ayrton and Roland x
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby bud »

NocturnalTendencies wrote:I watched Senna tonight, he was such a great man.


Indeed he was :yes:
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby LRW »

Jabberwocky wrote:I can not find any pre F1 stats about him.......


Racing in Britain
In 1985 he also entered the prestigious Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, finishing second. He returned in 1986 and won it before graduating to British Formula Three the following season. While in the UK, he briefly gained fame for the similarity of his name to that of TV puppet Roland Rat, whom he appeared alongside in an edition of TV-am and whose branding briefly appeared on his car.

Two years in British F3 yielded two twelfth places in the championship with West Surrey Racing and Madgwick Motorsport respectively. He also raced in other formulae than single seaters, once finishing second in the 1987 World Touring Car Championship driving a Team Schnitzer BMW M3. In 1988 he entered the final few rounds of the British Touring Car Championship in a class B BMW M3 for the Demon Tweeks team.

In 1989 he entered the British Formula 3000 series, finishing third overall.

Le Mans
The same year he raced in the Le Mans 24 Hours for the first time. The Brun Motorsport Porsche 962 he shared with Maurizio Sandro Sala and Walter Lechner retired in the third hour.

He raced in the next four Le Mans, with Brun again in 1991 and with the SARD team in 1990, 1992 and 1993. His highest finish came in 1993, when he, Mauro Martini and Naoki Nagasaka finished fifth in a Toyota 93 C-V.

Racing in Japan
In the nineties Ratzenberger switched to Japanese racing. He won one race each in 1990 and 1991 in the Japanese Sports Prototype Championship with the same SARD team he drove for at Le Mans. He also returned to touring car racing in the Japanese Touring Car Championship, finishing seventh in 1990 and 1991 in a BMW M3.

This paved the way for a return to Formula 3000 in the Japanese championship with the Stellar team in the 1992 season. The year began poorly but, when the team upgraded their two year-old Lola for a new model, Ratzenberger won twice to finish seventh overall. He remained in the series in the 1993 season, finishing eleventh.

Formula One
In 1994 he finally achieved his ambition of becoming a Formula One driver, signing a five-race deal with the new Simtek team run by Nick Wirth.

His campaign got off to a poor start at the Brazilian Grand Prix in Interlagos where he failed to qualify. But he got onto the grid for the next round at the TI Circuit in Aida, Japan, as his experience of the track from his touring car days meant he was the only driver in the race who had driven at the venue before. He finished eleventh.

(source: wiki of course)
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 17 Years

Postby madbrad »

LRW wrote:It is always horrific when someone dies way before their time, and I cant imagine the pain and torment this did to the Family of Senna.

But I do think when Famous people die young, it tends to glorify their achievements and elevate their place in history, compared to if they had continued living.

Senna was a great driver, Yes. But was he a God like legend that everyone praises him for...... er, no.

I know I'll get flamed for this, but it is my honest opinion.


You're not wrong, but in Senna's case, there was certainly something in him that was very special to millions of people when he was alive. No one before or since has had that. Or maybe it's just me.


Also, I just happened to visit The Madame Toussauds wax museum in NYC on Tues May 1st, so close to the date of the accident. In there I was surprised to find a wax figure of Ayrton. All the figures in there are way way better than the ones in Niagara Falls ON. There's a pic on my phone which I'll try to post later.
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby LRW »

Something I just thought of, after seeing the avatars and signature pics of Ayrton......

God, he looked fracking moody ALL the time. Did he not know how to smile......?

:eek:
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Re: Ayrton Senna - 18 Years On...

Postby Jabberwocky »

you see him smiling at the end of the film. have you listened to the directors commentary?
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