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Old 23rd April 2004, 22:51   #1
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It's almost a decade since my God, my idol and all time favourite racing driver passed away.

I remember the incident on May 1, 1994. As always I was glued to my TV set, listening to the familiar voice of *Murray Walker and watching Ayrton leading in San Marino. Things looked fine when everything went wrong. The Williams Renault didn't turn and went straight into a wall. Senna hadn't finished any race that season and I thought, well, he's goofed up yet again. I expected Ayrton to get out of the car expressing his anger (as he always did after such a goof up) in someway or the other.

But, that didn't happen. The yellow helmet didn't move. During the years that I rooted for him, I didn't think anything could happen to Senna. This time too, I was not really worried at first. It was only after paramedics laid him on a stretcher that I felt that something was seriously wrong. All my interest in the Grand Prix, which Michael Schumacher went on to win, was lost and all I wanted to hear was some good news regarding my idol. But the saying "no news is good news" held true and when the BBC news reader broke the news of Senna's death I was left in a state of shock. My summer vacation suddenly felt ruined.

Even now, the thought of this tragedy sends a chill up my spine and brings a tear to my eye.

"The yellow helmet has gone now. All that remains are the tyre marks on the asphault, a void in our hearts and the memories...."

For Senna worshippers - pics and videos available at : http://www.ayrton-senna.com







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Old 23rd April 2004, 23:59   #2
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I Miss You Ayrton!
Its been 9 years and I have never watched a San Marino Grand Prix since.. and this year would be no different.
Let alone watching it, I never drove it in all the F1 Games that I've played on Consoles or PC.

RIP!

To the Greatest Ever.
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Old 24th April 2004, 00:18   #3
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Ayrton Senna ... nothing less than a God during his times. It was the worst tragedy to have hit F1 in those times. Todays racing would have been a different story altogether with Schumacher and Senna. That moment was a really scary and still send chills down my spine when I think of it. Ayrton Senna will never return but he will remain in our memories for ever.

Ayrton we miss you!!!!! Rest in peace...

Team-bhp pays a tribute to the great Ayrton Senna
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Old 24th April 2004, 03:54   #4
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Ten years after the death of Ayrton Senna, Pat Symonds - his first ever F1 race engineer with Toleman in 1984 - recalled his most striking memory of the Brazilian champion.

Dallas was what I would call an ‘old-fashioned’ North American street circuit, lined with big concrete blocks. It was a very tricky circuit, and bumpy enough to make even Monaco look smooth! After qualifying well, and running as high as fourth, Ayrton eventually had to retire from damage caused by hitting the wall. On returning to the pits, he seemed shocked that he could have hit the wall; his immediate reaction was “I know I didn’t make a mistake – the wall must have moved.” The concrete block in question must have weighed about twenty tonnes, and we were naturally sceptical, but he was so insistent that he actually persuaded me to walk round the circuit and take a look. When I did so, the wall had indeed moved – somebody had clearly clipped the previous block and in doing so, displaced the next one by only about 4mm, so the transition between the two blocks was no longer smooth but marked with a tiny step. That was when the precision to which he was driving really hit home for me. Don’t forget, this was a guy in his first season of F1, straight out of F3…”
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Old 24th April 2004, 04:45   #5
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ahhh this is too painful even to glance at let alone read...... all i have saved on my comp is this...by a fellow ayrton fan...
A letter to Ayrton Senna

Just thought I'd drop you a quick line to say how much I enjoyed your drive in Estoril the other day. A very good result in the difficult circumstances. Four pit stops and you still finished third. Impressive.

Actually, I reckon that your qualifying lap on Saturday was one of the best I can remember and, you may recall that a couple of years ago there were some really remarkable flying laps in the days of qualifiers.

It must have been a frustrating year driving the shitbox McLaren. No, that's not really the right word, is it. Let's face it, in absolute terms, it is a shitbox, but actually it is a neat beautifully-produced, state-of-the-art racing machine. The problem is that, in a world where everything is relative, the McLaren is slower than the Williams-Renault - and, consequently, it is a shitbox. Everything is relative in F1, isn't it? Look at your talent, for example. All those blokes out there are bloody good, even the ones driving the cars which do not qualify. Racing reporters (who needs them, eh?) may sit around and discuss the finer points of F1 drivers and their talents, but the truth is that you are all super talented. It is just the extra few thousandths which are worth all that lovely money which you superstars collect, as opposed to the debts that some of the pay-drivers manage to bury themselves under.

What am I trying to say? Well, let's face it, everyone is expendable. You know that F1 needs you and, I suppose, this gives you bargaining power, but remember - always remember - that back in the bad old days stars died more often than they retired and there were always new stars. There are new stars standing behind you now. OK, perhaps they are pale shadows of what you are but they are stars nonetheless.

I do hope that you were just posturing when you said you would quit if you didn't get a good car. Let's face it, you are in your prime and you have so much more to win. It doesn't look like you are going to get a Williams, does it? OK, I accept you just never know with these guys, but it does seem that Alain Prost is firmly dug in.

And, another thing, I don't understand this 'Prost is a coward' business. Far be it from me to remind you that a few years ago when a Mr. Warwick wanted to join Team Lotus you blocked his arrival. You may say that Lotus wasn't capable of running two cars at the time and you were doing Derek a favor because of what happened to the man who became your team mate Johnny Dumfries. I am sure you can justify your actions to yourself, but I think that Alain, Williams and Renault all agreed that, after what happened in 1988 and 1989, a Senna-Prost pairing was just impossible. You are too alike, too determined.

Prost is clever, no question. Clever and committed. If you had wanted the Williams drive in 1993 you could have gone to Frank Williams in February this year. He would have signed you then and there. You didn't, did you? Nor did Nigel Mansell. Alain read the situation, took the step and did the deal. I'd call that a brave step myself when you were hedging your bets.

If you cannot have a Williams-Renault, why not a McLaren. OK, so Ron and the boys are a bit off the rails, but you've worked with them long enough to know that Ron hates losing. You're still young, you will win many more races.

That's about it really. You may say what do I know, I'm just an onlooker. Sure, I accept that. But I am also a fan and when your fans start asking questions about you, maybe you need to listen. You are a fabulous driver, an inspiration and a great champion. We know you can be a great ambassador for the sport. Remember when Fangio said you were a great champion, but not a great sportsman. And you said you would try to achieve that. Well, I don't think this is the way to achieve that goal.

See you in Japan.

Joe


alas ...all good things come to an end.....only thing is senna crossed the finish lines of our hearts and achieved more pole positions with our souls than any other mortal...let alone a driver!!! a tribute to the geatest driver ever to have treaded down the roads of F1...!!!!!!!
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