Born on March 21st, 1960, Ayrton Senna da Silva is one of the sporting legends in the Formula 1 circuit whose memories still live on in the minds and hearts of many. Before his death, he won several trophies and accolades in the racing sport. The Brazilian rally driver was born and brought up in a wealthy family where he and two of his siblings enjoyed an upbringing of great privileges. In fact, it is even noted that his love for racing was not for the money but simply developed out of the infatuation that he acquired from a miniature go-kart that was given to him by his father at only four years of age.
Following his passion, he raced a kart for the first time when he was only 13 years old and immediately won the race. Eight years later, Senna would go for a single-seater racing in Great Britain where he was also very successful. Within just three years, he was able to win five champions. During this time, he had divorced his wife and even went ahead to forsaken the future of his father’s business in the interest of pursuing a successful career in Formula One Racing.
Senna made his debut in Formula One Racing in 1984 with Toleman. The race that was held in Monaco saw him come second to Alain Prost’s McLaren. Still focused on the sport, he would not continue with Toleman due to his inadequate resources. He then bought out his contract and shifted to Lotus in 1985 where he was able to win a record 65 and six races within three seasons. Since this was the limits of Lotus, he then moved on to McLaren in 1988 and took part in races for the next six seasons. In these seasons, he won 35 races and three world champions.
In the same year that McLaren-Honda won 15 out of the 16 races, Senna edged out his teammate Alain Prost eight wins to seven in a race that earned him his first driving title. This feature led the two drives to become protagonists whereby in 1989, Prost beat Senna by edging him out at the Suzuka chicane. The following year, Senna took revenge at the first Suzuka corner by winning the race that earned him his second championship.
Senna’s life ended on 1st May 1994 in the San Marion Grand Prix when he speared off the Imola track and hit a concrete wall at the Tamburello corner. Millions of people watched the ending of the life of this legend on the track. After mourning, his body was laid to rest in Sau Paulo, Brazil where he was accorded a state funeral.
Some of the quick facts about this Formula One driver that you should know include:
- Won three world championships
- Made 162 Grand Prix Entries
- Won 41 Grand Prix titles
- 65 Pole positions.
- Owned a fortune worth $400 million at the time of death
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