Nelson Piquet

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
If the internet had been around in the 80s, then Piquet/Salazar would be the violent version of Alonso/deckchair on Instagram.
 

Gaucho

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Hello friends RasputinLives and teabagyokel ,

thanks for the warm welcome.

Re-reading my post I noticed some flaws, missing links between sentences and some key information missing. Sorry, I didn't review it before publishing :(

I'm from Brazil and I have been discussing the 80's and 90's F1 a lot lately. BTW I stopped watching it a couple of years ago, it is waaaaaaay too boring for those who, like me, watched the exciting 70's + 80's, and some 90's races.

Oddly enough I keep finding a lot of misunderstanding about Piquet's carrer, specially on british media. Since we didn't have internet back then, we from BR did not know the rest of the world's opinion, and we were (obviously) fueled by the TV GLOBO pair of commentors (Reginaldo Leme and Galvão Bueno) and a few writers from other medias outlets. At the same time we had exclusive (no kidding... :D) interviews of Piquet, Fittipaldi and Senna, which helped us understanding what was going on overseas on their own words.


I find it particularly funny that the Brits rate Mansell above Piquet. 'Funny' because I believe this understanding is clearly fueled by patriotist sentiments and by what happened in 86 and 87. And also because of what happened after Imola '87, until the end of that season.

But I don't want to offend anyone, I just want to contribute with information of BR drivers that might be unknown for general public.

Best regards from Brazil!
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
Welcome Gaucho, good to read another perspective on Piquet. I think he definitely suffered from a xenophobic attitude in the English press, including some of the specialist press. The fact that he didn't care about them, and didn't make much effort to put the other side of the story, certainly won him no favours.

His time at Brabham coincided with their most innovative, effective and successful period. Even then, there was a lot more warmth towards Alan Jones and John Watson, more straightforward and archetypal racing drivers, and there was suspicion of foreigners with their supposedly tricky ways. The FISA-FOCA war was essentially England vs France (Renault) and Italy (Ferrari), and while Brabham were on the FOCA side of course, funding came from Italy, and a Brazilian was winning races in cars of occasionally questionable legality.

We don't hear much about those drives, however, as the 1986-87 seasons seem to have become the defining period in the Piquet narrative. This is a shame, as I would argue Nelson had already done his best work before moving to Williams. The cars of the early Eighties were very hard to drive, including physically, with a furious pace of development of engines, tyres and aerodynamics. So, as the only driver to win more than one title in the period, and being denied a likely treble by shocking reliability in '82, there is ample evidence of pace, stamina, racecraft and technical insight for those who are willing to see it.
 

Gaucho

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@everyone: you can find a very very accurate narrative of Nelson's days in Williams (86 and 87) on this thread:
Williams F1 - The All Time Greatest Williams Drivers 2

I really enjoyed reading it (read it today 1st time), the author looked very keen on the details of each race, the drama, the emotions, the behind-the-pits stories, etc. Completely non-biased. I can safely say this is the best reading of those Williams days I had over the last ~10 years or more.


Galahad : thanks for your words. Agreed with you, specially on the years before Williams (79~85). By 82 Brabham was very dissatisfied with the development of BWM turbo, and Piquet was the main responsible to keeping it up (see Gordon Murray's interview here: interview-gordon-murray---the-making-of-another-br).

Cheers

Gaucho
 
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teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
If I recall correctly, he is the only driver to twice win the title in a non-Constructors title winning car.

I think he remains overshadowed not only by Anglophone drivers, but by the far more media-friendly and charismatic countryman who followed him.

I suspect the heroism then martyrdom of Senna counts against Piquet as well, since that comparison won't go away.
 

Gaucho

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How fitting that Piquet's favorite race is approaching. :D

8 retirements at the Principality.
Yeah.... he lost an easy lead in 1981 due to poor judgement when lapping Tambay (some say Tambay should have allowed him to pass) and at same time had a very very good race there in 1987, a few weeks after the Imola accident, when noone expected him to perform well.

There is a curious story of Nelson sleeping with princess Stephanie before the 1981 qualifying session: Você Sabia? - Nelson Piquet e o caso com a princesa de Mônaco
(in PT-BR :D)

It seems Prost did the same in 1984, according to Lauda: 'Last night I caught Stephanie of Monaco'
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Hi Gaucho, not sure if you have read my original post about Nelson but I hoped to try and redress the anti-Piquet feeling many felt when he was up against Alan Jones and Nigel Mansell. Nobody wins three World Championships if they are a mug and Nelson certainly wasn't.

In Niki Lauda's autobiography he rated Piquet as the fastest driver he ever raced against and this is a man who ran two seasons with Alain Prost. I think that says enough.
 

Gaucho

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Hi Gaucho, not sure if you have read my original post about Nelson but I hoped to try and redress the anti-Piquet feeling many felt when he was up against Alan Jones and Nigel Mansell. Nobody wins three World Championships if they are a mug and Nelson certainly wasn't.

In Niki Lauda's autobiography he rated Piquet as the fastest driver he ever raced against and this is a man who ran two seasons with Alain Prost. I think that says enough.

Hello FB,

yes I did. It is a good summary, but I like to bring into the discussion the little know facts, the behind-the-scenes, the reasons and opinions almost noone knows, in summary, the information that not taken into account by whatever reason .

If I was going to do a BIO of him, I would written it completely different :)

I'm not saying yours is wrong or incomplete, but that is the standard info you find in almost every season review website.

There is a ton of info on his Brabham's years that is largely ignored, and I understand this is the reason he is not much popular (also, he did not make friends with the media and fans, was outspoken and had a playboy life away from the circuits, which seemed to enrage the general public opinion towards him).

Let me know if you want to dig deep into every season or if we are good with what we have :)

Cheers!
 
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Incubus

Champion Elect
Well, if it's digging stuff up we' re talking about... you wouldn't have any info about what went on aboard Nelson's boat when Prost sayed there for a few days towards tail-end of the 1983 season?

From reading accounts of the 1983 season there was a bit of a story that broke in the media at around the time Prost and Piquet were fighting for the title at the end of 1983. Apparently Prost was going some promotional work for Renault in an area where Nelson's boat was anchored so he called him up to ask about any hotels in the area. So Nelson invited him to stay over in his boat for a few days instead of going to the trouble of booking hotel rooms.

Although both men when subsequently asked about it remained tight-lipped, there appeared to have been some sort of... partying going on onboard that boat. ;)

Was there ever any detail in the brazilian press about that story?
 
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