Ayrton Senna

Today (19 August 2011) "Senna" opens in Toronto and i'm taking off early from work to catch a matinee' viewing. This is about as good a time as any to open this thread...

From Prost's thread:

This has to be said and i'll say it again here...

The director of the movie "Senna" - Asif Kapadia - was on a Motor Sport Magazine podcast with then McLaren manager Jo Ramirez (who, unusually, was a trusted friend of both Senna and Prost)...and in the podcast he said something like this:

(Paraphrasing) "We had access to all of Bernies archives...and when we looked at the video of the cars coming out of Tosa at Imola, Schumacher's Benetton was the only car which exhibited unusual signs of, *ahem*, traction control...even the other Benetton didn't have it..."

Go to the Motor Sport Magazine website and click on 'podcasts' and listen for yourselves (June 15th podcast, I think).

Why do I bring it up? Well Senna suspected Schumacher's Benetton B194 had TC/LC and was driving out of his skin to make up for the difference. He noticed that it sounded and behaved differently (to even Verstappen's B194) while he watched them circulating from the wall after retiring at Aida (the second race of the year).

I don't need to go on about it, but you get the point.

Where does Prost come into this? Well, the Podcast goes into how Senna was on the telephone with Prost during that time talking, among other things, about that precise matter.

If Senna said that Schumi's car was using a form of TC, then personally I'd believe him. Prost believed Senna too. There aren't exactly any better qualified people to know such a thing. One thing I must say, however, is that despite the fact that Senna was trying to make up the difference through his own driving to keep up with Schumacher, I don't think this had anything to do with his death, something that a few twisted people (in my opinion) seem to think. Tamburello is not a corner that should worry an F1 car, even back then.

There was no greater expert on the sights and sounds of a Formula One car at Aida that day than Senna himself...And if his expert ears and eyes noted that only Schumacher's B194 sounded and reacted like it had traction control then i'm going to believe it. Period.

As per the accident at Tamburello...well, the saftey car that day wasn't exactly a Mercedes-Benz AMG...I believe it was an Opel and, as a result, a bit 'too' slow. The tyre pressures dropped significantly and that would have affected the ride height. Tamburello had a few bumps and when they went flat out again right after the SC pulled in, there's a reasonable chance the ride height wasn't what Senna would have imagined it to be.

[Safety Cars were a newer phenomenon in Formula One back then too, by the way. They were first properly introduced the year before (1993) and used only in two Grand Prix races.

They made many rule changes after that race, including making sure Safety Cars were faster so as to ensure tyre pressures didn't fall off significantly.]

Regardless, what are CTA members' memories and thoughts of Senna?

Mine were mixed. I thought he was immense and the fastest since Villeneuve ... but a bully. I was never his biggest fan primarily because his on track tactics at times bordered on insanity. Whereas Villeneuve risked his own life mainly, Senna didn't seem to have a problem with risking other drivers' lives while he was taking chances with his own.

Having said that, i'd rate the Brazilian thus All Time:

1= Senna
1= Prost
3. Clark
4. Fangio
5. Schumacher
6= Stewart
6= Moss

What are your thoughts and memories of the man and the driver?
 
From what I have read about Senna he was like two different creatures. On one hand incredibly human, just look at the Senna Institute, on the other hand a very callous man who, amongst other things, dumped his first wife as she was getting in the way of his career.
 
I wouldn't call it callous, I'd call it career-driven. Not everyone's objectives in life can be met with the first person they marry.
 
His first wife was just the start in a litany of people Senna used and discarded over the years. After his first World Title an interviewer from TV Globo asked him about the people he had trodden on and discarded through his life to get to where he was and Senna burst in to tears.
 
Of course he cried. He was human. Sometimes other people are in the way of your goals, and you have to make a hard decision. Yes, sometimes that choice sucks, and yes, you're going to regret some of those decisions some day, but if you made the decision not to pursue your goal, you'd regret that too, someday. Nobody ever said life would be fair, nor easy, or if they did, they were lying to you.
 
I would probably categorise Senna as almost child like in his approach to dealings with others. After Alain Prost accidentally spoke off the record about Ayrton to a journalist friend in 1989, who then published the story, Senna wouldn't call him by his name in interviews and didn't speak to him again until Prost's retirement in 1993, which was at Alain's suggestion anyway.

A very complex and flawed character. Certainly not the saint he has been built up to be since his death, but a ****ing fast racing driver.
 
I watched the Senna film last weekend as well. When he was alive and racing, I was huge fan, but all we saw at the time was him on track, there didn't seem to be as much of a drivers private life smattered throughout the media. Or maybe I just wasn't looking in the right places. I knew that he and Prost were sworn enemies, because Prost seemed to spend his life moaning about him. But after that film, I was left feeling that perhaps he wasn't the great guy I had thought him to be.
 
im hearing rumours from a few online places that Ayrton senna dad has passed away

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I have just come back from a trip to Turin and I highly recommend the National Automobile Museum which is owned by FIAT in Lingotto.

Thinking this would be a Ferrari dedicated museum surprisingly they had more on a special exhibition totally dedicated to Senna. Obviously being 30 years since he passed away in Emilia-Romagna but did not realise how much they revered Senna with posters 'Ayrton Senna forever ' advertised until I got to the museum.


Happy to share pics on an appropriate thread
 
I am reliably informed that many cars similar to those driven by St Ayrton have been renumbered to make them "Senna" cars.
 
I am reliably informed that many cars similar to those driven by St Ayrton have been renumbered to make them "Senna" cars.
Are you suggesting that this car may have infact been driven by the legendary Johnny Cecotto? I mean that's still good, am I right?
 
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