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Vettel as good as Senna, says Ascanelli


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#401 mnmracer

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 23:41

Well, a good question would be is: how would Senna have been rated had he not lost 1, but 3 championships to Prost?

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#402 Buttoneer

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 23:43

Back to Vettel please.

#403 Kingshark

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 23:44

Well, a good question would be is: how would Senna have been rated had he not lost 1, but 3 championships to Prost?

Probably still the same, perhaps slightly lower. Look at Gilles Villeneuve, the man didn't win anything in his career, yet is still considered to be among the very best. Death immortalizes sportsmen.

#404 Kingshark

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 23:48

Back to Vettel please.

My apologies, but can I quickly reply to aditya's post?

People definitely rate Clark higher than Piquet. Generally though, the bottom line is that winning more championships does not nessecary give you a higher status as a driver.

Hence fore, even if Vettel wins as many championships as Schumacher, he won't overtake Senna in "greatness" until he literally dies on track.

#405 ali_M

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 16:55

My apologies, but can I quickly reply to aditya's post?

People definitely rate Clark higher than Piquet. Generally though, the bottom line is that winning more championships does not nessecary give you a higher status as a driver.

Hence fore, even if Vettel wins as many championships as Schumacher, he won't overtake Senna in "greatness" until he literally dies on track.


Even if he dies, it may not be enough. :) Senna is special and his peculiarities will likely not be duplicated. Neither will his era, nor his teammates. So he will always be greatest for many. Vettel lacks the same sort of impact as Senna did. Such was Senna's impact that you'll read/hear others discussing whatif's that would further dazzle Senna's achievements. On the other hand, for Vettel, you're reading reasons why his results flatter his abilities. Such is this life.

#406 BenettonB192

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 17:09

On the other hand, for Vettel, you're reading reasons why his results flatter his abilities. Such is this life.


Pretty sure Senna would have been exposed to the same treatment by his detractors if the internet was already around and widespread as today in the 80's and 90's.

#407 aditya-now

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 17:44

My apologies, but can I quickly reply to aditya's post?

People definitely rate Clark higher than Piquet. Generally though, the bottom line is that winning more championships does not nessecary give you a higher status as a driver.

Hence fore, even if Vettel wins as many championships as Schumacher, he won't overtake Senna in "greatness" until he literally dies on track.


This is one of the points of view I never subscribed to: that Senna was only "great" because he died on track. To me, Senna was already a legend whilst alive, a driver like no other.

The same can be said about Jim Clark, Jochen Rindt and Gilles Villeneuve - they are not great and special because they died in a Grand Prix (or other race or qualifying) - they are remembered throughout history because they were, like Ayrton, most outstanding drivers.

Otherwise, why is there no comparable myth about Tom Pryce, Ronnie Peterson, Lorenzo Bandini, Wolfgang von Trips? They all died at a Grand Prix, they were all above average drivers - but they miss that special badge of "greatness" that especially Senna and Clark have, but also Rindt and Villeneuve.

By the same token Sebastian will not be considered a better or greater driver if he would (God beware!) "literally die on track", but because of his exploits in life. The whole "Senna is only great because he died on track"-thing is a myth.

Still I agree with you, Kingshark: even if Sebastian would win 7 or 8 WDCs, he would have a hard time usurping Ayrton as "the greatest of all times", even though Senna won only 3 WDCs. It is not the statistical success, not the ability as a driver only the counts, but some qualities beyond. One thing to say about Vettel: he is definitely a cleaner driver than Schumacher, so if he wins 7 WDCs I will rate Seb higher.

Yet even the most outstanding foul that Senna ever delivered (Suzuka 1990) was to me less dramatic than some of the fouls of other drivers, given the context (Balestre; grid position on dirty side; the foul of Prost the year before; preferential treatment to Prost the year before - they were literally asking for it and Senna duly delivered - part of his legend). Vettel shows his teeth also once in a while (and has to, to be regarded as an all-time great), as Monza 2012 (his trying to get rid of Alonso) showed.

In the field of fairness the drivers of old like Jim Clark were in another league all together - or they never got exposed, because the media coverage (TV cameras) was simply not there in that day and age.

I say all this in the context of Vettel being an extremely history-savvy driver. He has the WDC cup standing in his kitchen, looking at it every day (he is at home), goes through all the names one by one until he reaches the final three names (his own) - "almost a mystic procedure" as Seb himself called it.

Edited by aditya-now, 07 January 2013 - 17:57.


#408 joshb

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 17:47

"In the field of fairness the drivers of old like Jim Clark were in another league all together - or they never got exposed, because the media coverage (TV cameras) was simply not there in that day and age."

They had to be though. If you forced someone off back then, you'd be facing murder charges. Now, it would be a high speed crash but they'd probably escape serious injury

#409 Szoelloe

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:17

This is one of the points of view I never subscribed to: that Senna was only "great" because he died on track. To me, Senna was already a legend whilst alive, a driver like no other.

The same can be said about Jim Clark, Jochen Rindt and Gilles Villeneuve - they are not great and special because they died in a Grand Prix (or other race or qualifying) - they are remembered throughout history because they were, like Ayrton, most outstanding drivers.

Otherwise, why is there no comparable myth about Tom Pryce, Ronnie Peterson, Lorenzo Bandini, Wolfgang von Trips? They all died at a Grand Prix, they were all above average drivers - but they miss that special badge of "greatness" that especially Senna and Clark have, but also Rindt and Villeneuve.

By the same token Sebastian will not be considered a better or greater driver if he would (God beware!) "literally die on track", but because of his exploits in life. The whole "Senna is only great because he died on track"-thing is a myth.

Still I agree with you, Kingshark: even if Sebastian would win 7 or 8 WDCs, he would have a hard time usurping Ayrton as "the greatest of all times", even though Senna won only 3 WDCs. It is not the statistical success, not the ability as a driver only the counts, but some qualities beyond. One thing to say about Vettel: he is definitely a cleaner driver than Schumacher, so if he wins 7 WDCs I will rate Seb higher.

Yet even the most outstanding foul that Senna ever delivered (Suzuka 1990) was to me less dramatic than some of the fouls of other drivers, given the context (Balestre; grid position on dirty side; the foul of Prost the year before; preferential treatment to Prost the year before - they were literally asking for it and Senna duly delivered - part of his legend). Vettel shows his teeth also once in a while (and has to, to be regarded as an all-time great), as Monza 2012 (his trying to get rid of Alonso) showed.

In the field of fairness the drivers of old like Jim Clark were in another league all together - or they never got exposed, because the media coverage (TV cameras) was simply not there in that day and age.

I say all this in the context of Vettel being an extremely history-savvy driver. He has the WDC cup standing in his kitchen, look at it every day, goes through all the names one by one until he reaches the final three names (his own) - "almost a mystic procedure" as Seb himself called it.


SV is a "cleaner driver" than AS too. So you would simply have to rate him higher as of today, when they are par on WDC's. As i said elsewhere I am watching the '90-s seasons for some time now, and "cleaner" is pretty misleading. It was different. The level of entertainment you would get watching those cars and drivers with todays coverage tech, compared to what you get today? If I could play the difference on a piano, I would be a Gould or Rubinstein. It is just different. You cannot compare them. They are/were both successful, F1 evolved. SV is a great driver, and he would have been a great driver back then too. Or not. AS would be a great driver today. Or not. You can't be so sure either way. Meaning no offence though. Just acknowledge that it was different.

Edited by Szoelloe, 07 January 2013 - 18:18.


#410 gillesthegenius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:37

Pretty sure Senna would have been exposed to the same treatment by his detractors if the internet was already around and widespread as today in the 80's and 90's.


Thats what I was wondering. Had forums been around in his day people would probably have said that all his mega drives were due to various factors like great car, good set-up and luck. Lets just take a few for example...

Estoril85 : One can easily say that he nailed the set-up that day. Thats what we hear when Seb wins in the wet now.
Suzuka88 : One would probably say that he was lucky that prost had gear box issues and also that he had such a superior car that only his overtake on Alboreto was a proper one, all the others being just that act of driving past in a much faster car. Thats what people say when Seb comes through the field nowadays.
Monaco92 : People would probably say that he did drive well, but only because it was almost impossible to overtake at Monaco.
Donnington94 : Senna himself gave people a good excuse in the shape of his own comment about how he had 'traction control'.

See how easy it is to twist around great drives into mediocre ones. Thats whats happening to some of Seb's drives like Monza08, Monaco11, Spa11, Monza11 and Spa12. But with time, i feel people will, god willing, give those drives the credit that they deserve.

Edited : Damn I even got Seb's win in Monaco wrong. :mad:

Edited by gillesthegenius, 07 January 2013 - 19:11.


#411 LiJu914

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:42

You got some numbers/years wrong there.

#412 sopa

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:51

The same can be said about Jim Clark, Jochen Rindt and Gilles Villeneuve - they are not great and special because they died in a Grand Prix (or other race or qualifying) - they are remembered throughout history because they were, like Ayrton, most outstanding drivers.

Otherwise, why is there no comparable myth about Tom Pryce, Ronnie Peterson, Lorenzo Bandini, Wolfgang von Trips? They all died at a Grand Prix, they were all above average drivers - but they miss that special badge of "greatness" that especially Senna and Clark have, but also Rindt and Villeneuve.


I thought Peterson is also considered to be a bit of a "mythic" driver. Well, no less than Rindt was, for example.

Over the years I have heard various people considering Peterson as the fastest driver of his era.

#413 gillesthegenius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:53

You got some numbers/years wrong there.


Indeed. It should be Suzuka88 and Monaco92. Was too lazy to double check on my post. Thanks for pointing out. :)

#414 gillesthegenius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 18:56

I thought Peterson is also considered to be a bit of a "mythic" driver. Well, no less than Rindt was, for example.

Over the years I have heard various people considering Peterson as the fastest driver of his era.


... And Rindt being considered to be a match for Clark.

#415 scheivlak

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 00:09

... And Rindt being considered to be a match for Clark.

A match for Stewart, yes.

A match for Clark - where? By whom?

#416 Winter98

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 00:40

Well, a good question would be is: how would Senna have been rated had he not lost 1, but 3 championships to Prost?


Unquestionably behind Prost, probably at a similar level or slightly behind GV.

In the end, winning WDCs (and Indy titles back when it meant something) is what moves you up the list in the all time rankings. SV is certainly climbing that list quickly.

Edited by Winter98, 08 January 2013 - 00:56.


#417 aditya-now

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 00:50

SV is a "cleaner driver" than AS too. So you would simply have to rate him higher as of today, when they are par on WDC's. As i said elsewhere I am watching the '90-s seasons for some time now, and "cleaner" is pretty misleading. It was different. The level of entertainment you would get watching those cars and drivers with todays coverage tech, compared to what you get today? If I could play the difference on a piano, I would be a Gould or Rubinstein. It is just different. You cannot compare them. They are/were both successful, F1 evolved. SV is a great driver, and he would have been a great driver back then too. Or not. AS would be a great driver today. Or not. You can't be so sure either way. Meaning no offence though. Just acknowledge that it was different.


Very well put, it was different back then, and the analogy with Glenn Gould is very well taken - for the eccentricity of the man. Better still, take the intensity of Sviatoslav Richter and the soulfulness of Dinu Lipatti, then you have a real equivalent for Senna.

For Sebastian Vettel I would take the analogy in Marc-Andre Hamelin - perfection in technique but not imparting too much of his personality into the music he interprets. Similarly Vettel's races and pole laps are often spotless but lack the soul, flair and fire that Senna impregnated his immortal laps with.

#418 Winter98

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 00:58

Similarly Vettel's races and pole laps are often spotless but lack the soul, flair and fire that Senna impregnated his immortal laps with.


Do you think Senna could have done that in today's cars?

#419 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:20

Let's not forget a Newey designed F1 car won the WDC the last time in 1999 - so there must be something about the chemistry between Vettel and Newey. As has been pointed out repeatedly - where would Webber have landed the Red Bull with no Vettel on the team? How would the updates have worked (would they have been more suitable to Webber otherwise?). Or is it indeed the special chemistry between chief technical engineer and driver that we see at play here?


A friend of mine made an interesting point regarding Adrian Newey that I've not seen anywhere else...or at least don't recall seeing anywhere ever.

He said Newey's designs have only shone when the cars had a stable platform of sorts. If you look at his work at Leyton House, the Leyton cars worked best at tracks with very smooth surfaces like Paul Ricard, yet elsewhere they did not work as well. When he went to Williams, he had the benefit of Patrick Head being involved. We've had rather stagnant regulations the past few years, and coincidentally, Newey's designs are working very well again with the slight hiccup at the beginning of the 2012 season. It's an interesting point to consider, and if one does consider it, Vettel may be less of an influencing factor than may appear. Certainly he matters, but I have doubts to it being the same influence that Ayrton Senna had. Decades after he raced in karts for example, people still talk about his ability to understand machinery. They said he had a gift to understanding machines that they've never seen in another person, and he understood things at a very young age. Does anyone know if Sebastian has that sort of ability?

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#420 Higli

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:23

As Senna is not comparable to Fangio, Vettel is not comparable to Senna. Different cars, different era. Not better or worse, just different.

Ah yes, and the audience has changed too: In the mid-90ies I would hang out in a pub with friends to watch Schumi win the WDC in Suzuka at 4am in the morning. Today I'm setting my PVR to record the race and watch it while having breaktfast with the wife. :D

#421 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:28

Thats what I was wondering. Had forums been around in his day people would probably have said that all his mega drives were due to various factors like great car, good set-up and luck. Lets just take a few for example...

Estoril85 : One can easily say that he nailed the set-up that day. Thats what we hear when Seb wins in the wet now.
Suzuka88 : One would probably say that he was lucky that prost had gear box issues and also that he had such a superior car that only his overtake on Alboreto was a proper one, all the others being just that act of driving past in a much faster car. Thats what people say when Seb comes through the field nowadays.
Monaco92 : People would probably say that he did drive well, but only because it was almost impossible to overtake at Monaco.
Donnington94 : Senna himself gave people a good excuse in the shape of his own comment about how he had 'traction control'.

See how easy it is to twist around great drives into mediocre ones. Thats whats happening to some of Seb's drives like Monza08, Monaco11, Spa11, Monza11 and Spa12. But with time, i feel people will, god willing, give those drives the credit that they deserve.

Edited : Damn I even got Seb's win in Monaco wrong. :mad:



Estoril 1985 was one of those drives that I think regardless of whether it happened then, or now, it would have been lauded as a virtuoso drive simply because Senna stopped pushing late in the race. I've no doubt he easily could have lapped Michele Alboreto if he had wanted to, but there was little point given how colossally far ahead he was. The only people who would ever twist it into a mediocre drive are those who have an axe to grind regarding Senna...of which there are quite a few out there.

Monaco '92 was one of those drives that could only have occurred within that time period. There's no chance of such a drive happening again due to the rules on defending we have now. If anyone tried to defend the way Senna did near the end today --aside from the likely penalties they would incur-- there would be a colossal hissy fit thrown on this message board. It'd result in some 10 to 20 pages of arguments that devolve into bitterness, thus resulting in the topic being locked.

#422 jj2728

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:37

A match for Clark - where? By whom?


They had some pretty good dices in F2 back in '66 IIRC.

#423 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:42

Guys, let's try and keep this about Senna and Vettel since all of these off-topic comments, as much as I like them, have a good chance of getting deleted.

Does anyone know the depth of Vettel's technical knowledge when compared to Senna?

#424 Winter98

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:31

The only people who would ever twist it into a mediocre drive are those who have an axe to grind regarding Senna...of which there are quite a few out there.


Interestingly enough, the same thing could be said regarding some people's opinions of Vettel's drives and accomplishments.

#425 Kyo

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 04:12

Interestingly enough, the same thing could be said regarding some people's opinions of Vettel's drives and accomplishments.

In reality I have never seen someone trying to diminish Estoril 85 saying it wasn't one of the all time greats (not saying everyone thinks it is the greatest ever but I don't recall someone saying it was just some regular win). There is no plausible argument. The race was wet from beginning to end, no safety car either, so no gambling involved. The set-up difference argument is just silly since at the time you didn't have to gamble how the weather would be 1 day before the race. No one thinks Lotus was the better car either, let alone a 1+ sec faster car to let someone put a 30s lead in 20 laps. That day was just Senna showing in his second wet race what everyone already had seen in his first wet race, magic!

#426 Winter98

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 05:14

In reality I have never seen someone trying to diminish Estoril 85 saying it wasn't one of the all time greats (not saying everyone thinks it is the greatest ever but I don't recall someone saying it was just some regular win). There is no plausible argument. The race was wet from beginning to end, no safety car either, so no gambling involved. The set-up difference argument is just silly since at the time you didn't have to gamble how the weather would be 1 day before the race. No one thinks Lotus was the better car either, let alone a 1+ sec faster car to let someone put a 30s lead in 20 laps. That day was just Senna showing in his second wet race what everyone already had seen in his first wet race, magic!


You won't get any argument from me that Senna was one of the best, or that Vettel is not at his level yet. I think Senna was just a hair behind MS so obviously I have much respect for his skills.

I was commenting on Bosch's comment that some people seem to have an axe to grind with Senna, and pointing out that that is another thing Senna and Vettel have in common.

#427 Bunchies

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 07:39

They said he had a gift to understanding machines that they've never seen in another person, and he understood things at a very young age. Does anyone know if Sebastian has that sort of ability?


If Seb has a similar personality with similar intelligence and education, then yes.

Edited by Bunchies, 08 January 2013 - 07:39.


#428 H2H

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:35

A friend of mine made an interesting point regarding Adrian Newey that I've not seen anywhere else...or at least don't recall seeing anywhere ever.

He said Newey's designs have only shone when the cars had a stable platform of sorts. If you look at his work at Leyton House, the Leyton cars worked best at tracks with very smooth surfaces like Paul Ricard, yet elsewhere they did not work as well. When he went to Williams, he had the benefit of Patrick Head being involved. We've had rather stagnant regulations the past few years, and coincidentally, Newey's designs are working very well again with the slight hiccup at the beginning of the 2012 season. It's an interesting point to consider, and if one does consider it, Vettel may be less of an influencing factor than may appear. Certainly he matters, but I have doubts to it being the same influence that Ayrton Senna had. Decades after he raced in karts for example, people still talk about his ability to understand machinery. They said he had a gift to understanding machines that they've never seen in another person, and he understood things at a very young age. Does anyone know if Sebastian has that sort of ability?


I think one of the dangers of knowing the CV of a driver so well is that we overweight the evidence in his favour. I mean that of course in general.

To answer your question, you are talking about a guy who in his first year in a single seater came in the moring after one of the first tests back with a list he of things he wants to be changed on the car. That this was extremely unusual goes with out saying at that age and in this situation.

Edited by H2H, 08 January 2013 - 08:38.


#429 aditya-now

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:10

To answer your question, you are talking about a guy who in his first year in a single seater came in the moring after one of the first tests back with a list he of things he wants to be changed on the car. That this was extremely unusual goes with out saying at that age and in this situation.


Which supports the theory that it is the technical feedback that Senna and Vettel give/gave that might have endeared them both more than others to Ascanelli - this from the perspective that Giorgio is first of all a technical engineer and experiences drivers thus.


#430 aditya-now

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:13

Do you think Senna could have done that in today's cars?


The flair, the fire and the intensity - yes, absolutely Senna would exude these qualities also in today's cars, because these qualities are a function of the driver, not of the car.

In the same vein you will feel more fire in Alonso's driving and more excitement in Hamilton's driving (in today's cars!) than in Vettel's driving. Vettel's driving is more clinical and possibly more effective. It becomes "hot" only when he starts crashing into backmarkers or drives into people from behind in safety car periods...

#431 seahawk

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:28

I am tired of this "great" drivers. Many of them became legends because they were also interesting off the track. Senna was controversial with his religious believes, his underwear style and other things. Prost was not a lesser driver, he just lacked the looks and was French. Schumacher the same. Great driver, but off the track boringly normal.



#432 aditya-now

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:42

SV is a "cleaner driver" than AS too. So you would simply have to rate him higher as of today, when they are par on WDC's. As i said elsewhere I am watching the '90-s seasons for some time now, and "cleaner" is pretty misleading. It was different. The level of entertainment you would get watching those cars and drivers with todays coverage tech, compared to what you get today? If I could play the difference on a piano, I would be a Gould or Rubinstein. It is just different.


Coming back to your piano-analogy, Szoelloe, as it really got me thinking. I mentioned Dinu Lipatti, for those who know him the greatest pianist of all times: "Once I had a chat with Georg Vasarhelyi. He told me that he attended a concert with Lipatti in Switzerland in his young days. He said "I don't recall one tone of that concert. But I recall that the concert stage with Lipatti was one huge clear LIGHT!". Yes, we almost SEE the light when listening to Lipatti!!

In the same vein I could see a brightness with Senna, his yellow helmet and the spot-white red McLaren - a pristineness that you rarely find in any sport, let alone oily/gummy/smoky F1. There was an impression of brightness when he and his McLaren came on the screen, and the same light I did not see with Prost or Berger in the same McLaren. Note: this impression has nothing to do with Senna's own religious beliefs. And quite possibly - I was hallucinating consistently.

I don't see that light with Vettel, but then, the color of the Red Bull and Seb's helmets don't warrant it, either.

#433 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 14:17

Interestingly enough, the same thing could be said regarding some people's opinions of Vettel's drives and accomplishments.


Certainly it holds true for Vettel. As I've said, I've not been a fan of Vettel by any stretch of the imagination, and I have at times been vocal in my dislike for Vettel. But I felt that change during the last quarter of the season. What it's more of a case of is that certain people at Red Bull do not endear themselves to me. Horner and Marko to be specific.

Blaming Vettel for having a good car is pointless as every driver on the grid wants a car like that. People only take lesser cars because they have no other option. If holding out to get a drive like Red Bull, or McLaren worked, everyone would be doing it.

#434 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 14:27

Coming back to your piano-analogy, Szoelloe, as it really got me thinking. I mentioned Dinu Lipatti, for those who know him the greatest pianist of all times: "Once I had a chat with Georg Vasarhelyi. He told me that he attended a concert with Lipatti in Switzerland in his young days. He said "I don't recall one tone of that concert. But I recall that the concert stage with Lipatti was one huge clear LIGHT!". Yes, we almost SEE the light when listening to Lipatti!!

In the same vein I could see a brightness with Senna, his yellow helmet and the spot-white red McLaren - a pristineness that you rarely find in any sport, let alone oily/gummy/smoky F1. There was an impression of brightness when he and his McLaren came on the screen, and the same light I did not see with Prost or Berger in the same McLaren. Note: this impression has nothing to do with Senna's own religious beliefs. And quite possibly - I was hallucinating consistently.

I don't see that light with Vettel, but then, the color of the Red Bull and Seb's helmets don't warrant it, either.


Pretty much the feeling I get even now when I watch races in which Senna drove. Even knowing he doesn't win a particular race, you find yourself anticipating the appearance of the day-glo Marlboro McLaren with the bright yellow helmet. It's a surreal feeling to watch a race that is perhaps a quarter of a century in the past, and to still get the visceral sensation that comes with seeing Senna. How many drivers across motorsports have ever done such a thing? The argument that people are taken with Senna even now because of religion/mystical belief has never held true for me. While his religious beliefs were fascinating to me for a reason that has nothing to even do with racing, it's never seemed worth debating when discussing his driving/technical ability.

One knew how good Senna was, and watching him drive I imagine --to use your musician comparisons-- must have been the equivalent of watching Mozart conduct concerts in the 18th century. Vettel reminds me a bit of Alain Prost in his clinical, detached approach during races. It may be why also people have trouble realizing how good he is. I've always said Prost was far better than he even gets credit for, and I'm not a fan of his. Something interesting to me is, I wonder how would Vettel be viewed if his clinical, non-emotional style actually carried from qualifying to the race to the podium. I know a number of people who become livid over his celebrations when he wins a Grand Prix or takes pole position.

#435 Skinnyguy

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 14:37

Pretty much the feeling I get even now when I watch races in which Senna drove. Even knowing he doesn't win a particular race, you find yourself anticipating the appearance of the day-glo Marlboro McLaren with the bright yellow helmet. It's a surreal feeling to watch a race that is perhaps a quarter of a century in the past, and to still get the visceral sensation that comes with seeing Senna. How many drivers across motorsports have ever done such a thing?


It´s not him doing anything. It´s your brain.

#436 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 14:59

It´s not him doing anything. It´s your brain.


If he did nothing, there would be no anticipation.

One does not anticipate anything from nothing.

#437 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 15:02

I think one of the dangers of knowing the CV of a driver so well is that we overweight the evidence in his favour. I mean that of course in general.

To answer your question, you are talking about a guy who in his first year in a single seater came in the moring after one of the first tests back with a list he of things he wants to be changed on the car. That this was extremely unusual goes with out saying at that age and in this situation.


I'd be really interested if when he was in karts had he expressed preferences for certain setups with the karts. There has to be someone familiar with Vettel's history around here? I don't know all that much.

#438 Group B

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 15:15

Probably still the same, perhaps slightly lower. Look at Gilles Villeneuve, the man didn't win anything in his career, yet is still considered to be among the very best. Death immortalizes sportsmen.

No denying that. I guess it's partially the shear tradgedy of seeing a young life cut short, and partially the 'what could have been' factor.

#439 Skinnyguy

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 15:17

If he did nothing, there would be no anticipation.

One does not anticipate anything from nothing.


YOU anticipate. Senna was a top driver with some special characteristics that YOU liked. Others might not feel anything at all about him but get shivers with other drivers in the opposite extreme.

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#440 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 15:22

YOU anticipate. Senna was a top driver with some special characteristics that YOU liked. Others might not feel anything at all about him but get shivers with other drivers in the opposite extreme.


Again, you cannot anticipate something if a driver does nothing. It doesn't matter who the driver is. They have to do something in order for anyone to anticipate something from them.

What would there be to anticipate if they were nothing more than a fixture on a wall?

#441 fatd

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 15:38

Again, you cannot anticipate something if a driver does nothing. It doesn't matter who the driver is. They have to do something in order for anyone to anticipate something from them.

What would there be to anticipate if they were nothing more than a fixture on a wall?


I think what Skinnyguy's trying to say is, the impression you get from watching a certain driver may differ greatly from the one I get. Sure, the driver does something, but how it comes across to the viewer is greatly down to the viewer's preference. Things like "getting a shiver from watching him racing" is something that is purely a personal experience, and cannot be generalized for all viewer. It's valid as a personal opinion, but then if someone else gets a shiver from watching another driver, it's also valid as his personal opinion. While one driver does the exact same thing, it can be viewed as excitable for one and totally unexcitable for another. Both opinions are valid, but cannot be held as a fact that is applicable to everyone.

Edited by fatd, 08 January 2013 - 15:40.


#442 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 20:02

I think what Skinnyguy's trying to say is, the impression you get from watching a certain driver may differ greatly from the one I get. Sure, the driver does something, but how it comes across to the viewer is greatly down to the viewer's preference. Things like "getting a shiver from watching him racing" is something that is purely a personal experience, and cannot be generalized for all viewer. It's valid as a personal opinion, but then if someone else gets a shiver from watching another driver, it's also valid as his personal opinion. While one driver does the exact same thing, it can be viewed as excitable for one and totally unexcitable for another. Both opinions are valid, but cannot be held as a fact that is applicable to everyone.


Yes, and coincidentally now that we've gotten to the crux of the whole thing --personal opinion or personal feeling-- there was no reason for him to even say anything at all.

It's sort of like a path. Senna was known for doing sensational things behind the wheel, enough to the point where one could never be certain where the magic (my term) would show up. There's a certain excitement in watching him behind the wheel even many years later for myself. I thought it was rather clear in my reply to aditya that I was giving a personal remark on that subject since I know where he was coming from, and it should have been crystal clear that the result of the feeling had to do with what Senna did. Saying the driver did nothing is rather ill-informed. They all do something rather than nothing because if they did nothing they would not have any fans, nor would the car move an inch.

Edited by BoschKurve, 08 January 2013 - 20:03.


#443 Kingshark

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 20:07

Yes, and coincidentally now that we've gotten to the crux of the whole thing --personal opinion or personal feeling-- there was no reason for him to even say anything at all.

It's sort of like a path. Senna was known for doing sensational things behind the wheel, enough to the point where one could never be certain where the magic (my term) would show up. There's a certain excitement in watching him behind the wheel even many years later for myself. I thought it was rather clear in my reply to aditya that I was giving a personal remark on that subject since I know where he was coming from, and it should have been crystal clear that the result of the feeling had to do with what Senna did. Saying the driver did nothing is rather ill-informed. They all do something rather than nothing because if they did nothing they would not have any fans, nor would the car move an inch.

And I thought Senna was nothing but a boring driver and nothing special. He also never gave me the slightest bit of shivers.

How do you counter that?

You are trying to use your opinion and your feel about a driver as evidence to an argument, which is worthless I'm afraid.

#444 1Devil1

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 20:19

Sometimes I get bored about all the Senna was magic behind the wheel and that is the reason he was so special and the best of all times. As mentioned you had the impression he did something no one else could do. Formula One is no mystery, like every other sport, Senna id nothing, which was out of physical limits. He drove a formula one car at his limits, was super quick over one lap, was very good in the rain, three times champion, very likely with some more titles in his back, without this fatal crash. But this is such a weak argument, we have to read over and over again. I had this feeling about Michael Schumacher, when he drove one fastest lap after another - but I am realist enough to understand as fan I have a different perception - only because I feel connected with one driver and his special moments, it doesn't make him the best or counts as argument.



#445 apoka

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 20:32

Coming back to your piano-analogy, Szoelloe, as it really got me thinking. I mentioned Dinu Lipatti, for those who know him the greatest pianist of all times: "Once I had a chat with Georg Vasarhelyi. He told me that he attended a concert with Lipatti in Switzerland in his young days. He said "I don't recall one tone of that concert. But I recall that the concert stage with Lipatti was one huge clear LIGHT!". Yes, we almost SEE the light when listening to Lipatti!!

In the same vein I could see a brightness with Senna, his yellow helmet and the spot-white red McLaren - a pristineness that you rarely find in any sport, let alone oily/gummy/smoky F1. There was an impression of brightness when he and his McLaren came on the screen, and the same light I did not see with Prost or Berger in the same McLaren. Note: this impression has nothing to do with Senna's own religious beliefs. And quite possibly - I was hallucinating consistently.

I don't see that light with Vettel, but then, the color of the Red Bull and Seb's helmets don't warrant it, either.

Very well put, it was different back then, and the analogy with Glenn Gould is very well taken - for the eccentricity of the man. Better still, take the intensity of Sviatoslav Richter and the soulfulness of Dinu Lipatti, then you have a real equivalent for Senna.

For Sebastian Vettel I would take the analogy in Marc-Andre Hamelin - perfection in technique but not imparting too much of his personality into the music he interprets. Similarly Vettel's races and pole laps are often spotless but lack the soul, flair and fire that Senna impregnated his immortal laps with.


That would be perfectly suited if you have to give an emotional speech about Senna (leaving out the Vettel bits), but doesn't help much when comparing two drivers. I felt more for Schumacher or Vettel than Senna on track - I think that is just the way we perceive things, which is perfectly fine as long as we are still aware that its just our perception. By the above emotional standards a driver could be 10 seconds faster than Senna and still not have the tiniest bit of a chance to achieve similar greatness.


#446 STRFerrari4Ever

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 21:01

I think it's foolish to compare intra-era, let alone across eras.

Even now, we don't really know who is the better of Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton or even Raikkonen (to throw in another name in the ring).

All we know is that Hamilton-Alonso had one year together.

Even within a team in the same year you can't get a 100 percent picture because of luck, favoritism, driving style vs car design philosophy.

All I know is that this was supposed to be the Alonso-Hamilton era...but Vettel came along and made winners out of Minardi/Toro Rosso and RBR...and he helped make Newey into a winner again, something which hadn't been done by Newey since 1999.

In addition, Vettel "upped" his "game" hugely when the titles were on the line in 2010 and 2012 and wrestled both titles away when the bookies had Alonso as favourite at crucial points of these seasons.

Under pressure, Vettel is HUGE...and, according to all/himself, there's room to improve and more to come.


Lastly, look at where Webber finished in 2012. 6th!

That tells you a lot because Webber won Monaco for the 2nd time this year. On merit. And, at one point, Briatore was unwilling to pair up Alonso and Webber because he thought that both were (paraphrasing) "Geese that Lay Golden Eggs".

Either Webber was over-rated...Or Vettel is an all time great already.

I wonder how Alonso would react to Vettel's speed and mental strength in the other Ferrari under a 100% co-equal Number 1 policy.

As far as I'm concerened, Vettel's faster than Alonso...and...Vettel is mentally stronger than Hamilton.

As a package, I think he's the fastest/best/mentally strongest.


/thread

#447 BoschKurve

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 21:23

And I thought Senna was nothing but a boring driver and nothing special. He also never gave me the slightest bit of shivers.

How do you counter that?

You are trying to use your opinion and your feel about a driver as evidence to an argument, which is worthless I'm afraid.


I've got a question for you. If I was speaking with regards to my personal feelings and agreeing with how another poster felt --and have stated such several times-- what would even cause you to think I was stating anything as fact?

Try reading a little more carefully please as I don't feel like having to constantly point out the obvious. Thanks.

#448 Winter98

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 23:57

The flair, the fire and the intensity - yes, absolutely Senna would exude these qualities also in today's cars, because these qualities are a function of the driver, not of the car.


Cool, thanks for answering my question, its great to see the passion.

In the same vein you will feel more fire in Alonso's driving and more excitement in Hamilton's driving (in today's cars!) than in Vettel's driving.


I feel differently. and for my money Vettel is far more exciting than Alonso. IMO, Vettel is willing to risk more and trust in his ability to pull it off, ie Abu Dhabi and Brazil, and I can't help but love those charges through the field. I think Vettel and Hamilton are the more exciting of the three.

Vettel's driving is more clinical and possibly more effective. It becomes "hot" only when he starts crashing into backmarkers or drives into people from behind in safety car periods...

Yes, Vettel can be Prost like as well. He seems to be acquiring the ability to drive in whatever style is required to maximize his chances at winning. He was amazing to watch down the stretch this year.

No question he is young. The youngest 3 time WDC in history, and sometimes it shows on the track. Imagine what he's going to be like when he quits making those mistakes.

#449 aditya-now

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 23:58

I think what Skinnyguy's trying to say is, the impression you get from watching a certain driver may differ greatly from the one I get. Sure, the driver does something, but how it comes across to the viewer is greatly down to the viewer's preference. Things like "getting a shiver from watching him racing" is something that is purely a personal experience, and cannot be generalized for all viewer. It's valid as a personal opinion, but then if someone else gets a shiver from watching another driver, it's also valid as his personal opinion.


The beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, to paraphrase Plato...

The driver that gives you shivers down the spine says a lot about the person you are.


#450 aditya-now

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 00:01

I feel differently. and for my money Vettel is far more exciting than Alonso. IMO, Vettel is willing to risk more and trust in his ability to pull it off, ie Abu Dhabi and Brazil, and I can't help but love those charges through the field. I think Vettel and Hamilton are the more exciting of the three.


I appreciate your words, even if our perception or feeling differs. An answer like yours is a good example of how cultivated and well-meaning this forum could be for all of us. :up: