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Top 20 Greatest F1 Drivers of all time - BBC list [split]


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#1201 as65p

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 08:53

Couldn't you say the same about Schumacher, Fangio or Clark? In fact, couldn't you say the same about Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso today? There is no way of telling or knowing who was the fastest driver of all time - however, what is obvious is that Senna had certain... questionable traits.

His fanbase is no better, I'm afraid. Search up Senna, Go on any YouTube video, and write a comment claiming that there was a driver in history equally good or better than Senna. Within two days you will receive a bunch of bashing from highly-sensitive Senna admirers.


Or, when there is another "best of all time" list being discussed in which Senna comes out on top, you don't even have to wait two days for a bunch of highly excited Senna detractors showing up.

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#1202 SparkPlug

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 08:56

If Schumacher died or was forced to retire after his crash at Silverstone 1999, he'd have been placed number 1 on this excuse of a list.

#1203 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:22

If Schumacher died or was forced to retire after his crash at Silverstone 1999, he'd have been placed number 1 on this excuse of a list.


Gee.... I so, so doubt that. :)

The enigma that was Senna played on the minds and hearts of so many fans and team members etc. He managed to do so despite his clear flaws and this IMO, has added a lot to his greatness. We can have little spats about his race craft etc., but this doesn't take away from the overall figure he was and just how much he impacted the sport. For this reason, it's no surprise that he's been chosen. I have my personal favourite, but I fully understand Senna being chosen since there's really not much separating the top 5-6 that have been chosen. But one has to be first... each will have their own. It would appear that the BBC voting favoured Senna.

One has to admit, putting aside the claims of media sensationalism to invoke controversy etc, that Senna would likely be voted number one in other surveys carried out without such a potential agenda.

Character seems to have played a lot in the order of the choices made especially when the technical abilities seem quite similarly great. It's only right and fair that these other facets of the driver are also considered when making that final decision. Senna was already considered a great in F1 before he died and this is why his death was such a monumental moment in the sport.

Senna was very open about his passion for the sport. He was open about how serious he was about it and how principled he was. Of course, there may be disagreement about his personal principles and we see how things worked out or didn't for him in this regard. It's his openness in this regard that has been a huge asset to how he was perceived. The natural tendency of one looking on is that if it's not seen, then it means that it isn't there. Senna showed to the world this side of him. Add to that his genuine speed on the track and the effect is what we see here now. His being voted number 1.

My personal favourite is Schumi though. :) He definitely didn't demonstrate that same sort of open passion that Senna had. He was more seen as one who was there with a single-pointed will to win at all costs. He was definitely not openly confrontational, nor did he publicly expound on his principles etc. He definitely didn't open up his spiritual side to the public. His closed nature had him seen as arrogant among other things. There was no openness present to offset his ontrack behaviour by creating a better balance with regard to his public image as occurred with Senna with stunning effect. It's amazing how your transgressions will be overlooked if you're loved and show your fans a piece of your soul as it were in a direct way. To see a more complete picture of Schumacher one has to make the effort. No doubt about that one.

But I am OK with the order though I took serious exception to Benson's profile article on Schumacher. I think he overdid it in his efforts to justify why Schumacher, despite all his record breaking and unprecedented success, was voted in at number 4. Many so often say that the stats speak for themselves. However, there's one notable, though not the only exception here.... Schumacher. I often seen apologies being made or that despite a mans stats, he shouldn't be underestimated as with Moss and Villeneuve. However, I must say that playing down Schumi's stats has been as unprecendented in scope, IMO anyway, as the stats themselves.

It's been an interesting list for what it's worth.

Edited by ali_M, 14 November 2012 - 09:44.


#1204 Glengavel

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:47

Or, when there is another "best of all time" list being discussed in which Senna comes out on top, you don't even have to wait two days for a bunch of highly excited Senna detractors showing up.


Far from being the views of "highly excited Senna detractors", the general consensus in here seems to be that Senna was a very talented driver whose race tactics were, sometimes, at least questionable and at most downright dangerous, and altogether completely unnecessary from someone proclaimed as the number one greatest F1 driver of all time.


#1205 LiJu914

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:02

Senna death certainly changed the perception about him, but to suggest that he´s No.1 just because of that, is still wrong imho, as there are still good arguments to put him there - at least in terms of pure skills (not saying that one "has to" put him in No.1 though).


Still the list is of course a document of its time. Most people working for the BBC or the media in general are between 30-50 years old. So at best they could follow F1 since the 70s in their childhood, but a large part probably didn´t even watch F1 prior to the 80s. And of course it makes a difference, whether you actually witness something yourself or just get told about it.
E.g. the storys about Fangios Nurburgring race 57 or Clarks Monza GP 67 etc. surely sound fascinating - but do i have the emotions about that like i had, when i watched an unknown Brazilian outclass the whole field under extremly difficult circumstances in a sh!tbox of car...or when some german guy established a lead of a full minute within just nine laps in typical ardennes weather? Not at all. And even if you try to stay objective about that matter, it´s difficult to ignroe completely.


A list like that will probably look quite different in ten or twenty years, irrespective of what certain drivers of the current generation will achieve...

Edited by LiJu914, 14 November 2012 - 11:42.


#1206 as65p

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:02

Far from being the views of "highly excited Senna detractors", the general consensus in here seems to be that Senna was a very talented driver whose race tactics were, sometimes, at least questionable and at most downright dangerous, and altogether completely unnecessary from someone proclaimed as the number one greatest F1 driver of all time.


You can hold such a POV, no problem, but why do you have to delude yourself into declaring that a "general consensus", when it's just one opinion among many?

#1207 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:02

Far from being the views of "highly excited Senna detractors", the general consensus in here seems to be that Senna was a very talented driver whose race tactics were, sometimes, at least questionable and at most downright dangerous, and altogether completely unnecessary from someone proclaimed as the number one greatest F1 driver of all time.


Any human being who is fiercely competitive and very passionate about what he/she is doing, will invariably have challenging moments where their judgement overtakes them resulting in their doing things that are either clearly out of place or arguably so. It's inevitable that a man as Senna, with his level of determination and passion would inevitably be embroiled in incidents as he was. It's a part of the package that was Senna. It's unfortunate when one part of the package is extracted and put center stage without looking at all that was Senna. He wasn't perfect and this is wonderful to see. I'm always skeptic about the unblemished personas. There's no such thing. Falsified saintly persona's are only possible in public imagery and so many buy into it resulting in an inability to appreciate a public figure as Senna once his flaws become evident.

Senna was no doubt tremendously special. The no.1 status is understandable. This is about competing in F1 and boy was he all about just that!!!

#1208 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:15

Senna death certainly changed the perception about him, but to suggest that he´s No.1 just because of that, is still wrong imho, as there are still good arguments to put him there - at least in terms of pure skills (not saying that one "has to" put him in No.1 though).


IMO, his death enhanced how many deal with the question of 'what if?' about Senna.

IOW's, if Hamilton is leading a race and he has a DNF, we really can't be sure that he would have won, and for this reason, the credit can't given. He could have made a mistake among other things.

Senna's achievements have been extrapolated in a way. A common thing to hear or read is a reflection on the 'what if'. If he had not died then he would have won x amount of more championships etc. I think his death has made it easy to believe in such assumptions and saved him the possibility of not having lived up to those expectations. Clarke is similarly viewed since he died at the pinnacle of his career. The 'what if's' typically assume a continued run of success as was ongoing at the point of death. Other greats, we have watched to the end where things were often not as sparkly as they were at the pinnacle of their careers, and this has worked against them. For some reason, no such decline is ever entertained where Senna is concerned.

Edited by ali_M, 14 November 2012 - 10:19.


#1209 Wander

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 11:46

Senna and Clark might have retired within a couple of years anyway for all we know, still at the peak like Stewart was, and Schumacher was in 2006.

I think that to be perceived as a 'true' legend, you don't necessarily have to die at the top, it is enough if you stop while still at the top. Schumacher made the mistake of coming back and that hurt his reputation, whether or not you think it was deserved. Many other drivers also made the mistake of going on for a season or more too long (possibly combined with a poor team choice): Graham Hill, Damon Hill, Emerson Fittipaldi, Keke Rosberg... And all their reputations suffered to some extent. Perhaps someone like Keke could have been in the top 20 if it wasn't for that dismal 86 season he had when pairing Prost. Graham and Emerson certainly could have been higher if they had retired right after their second championships or maybe a year after that.

#1210 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 12:47

Senna and Clark might have retired within a couple of years anyway for all we know, still at the peak like Stewart was, and Schumacher was in 2006.

I think that to be perceived as a 'true' legend, you don't necessarily have to die at the top, it is enough if you stop while still at the top. Schumacher made the mistake of coming back and that hurt his reputation, whether or not you think it was deserved. Many other drivers also made the mistake of going on for a season or more too long (possibly combined with a poor team choice): Graham Hill, Damon Hill, Emerson Fittipaldi, Keke Rosberg... And all their reputations suffered to some extent. Perhaps someone like Keke could have been in the top 20 if it wasn't for that dismal 86 season he had when pairing Prost. Graham and Emerson certainly could have been higher if they had retired right after their second championships or maybe a year after that.


Senna and Clarke clearly had unfinished business. It's not like they were retiring at the top. That is quite different. It's like a man who gives a short performance and you judge him for it. Afterall, he completed what he had to present to us. It's entirely different when another has to be judged based on an interrupted performance. When this is the case, we speculate a lot with what if's and wonder what the entire performance would have been like. We too often assume that the standard of performance, relative to other competitors or on absolute terms would have remained the same.

I see that you're also speculating about when Clarke would have retired.

Edited by ali_M, 14 November 2012 - 12:47.


#1211 Glengavel

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 13:07

You can hold such a POV, no problem, but why do you have to delude yourself into declaring that a "general consensus", when it's just one opinion among many?


Read the rest of the posts in this thread. My "POV" is by no means unique.


#1212 Kingshark

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 13:24

I've noticed, once again that, underestimating/discrediting Senna gets a lot more people raging than doing the same to Schumacher. Coincidence? I don't think so.

#1213 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:00

I've noticed, once again that, underestimating/discrediting Senna gets a lot more people raging than doing the same to Schumacher. Coincidence? I don't think so.


I've followed both intensely and I give Schumi my personal nod. Perhaps and only because I identify more with his personal style. If another man prefers Senna, that's OK. As to underestimating/discrediting Senna. Those who genuinely do that sort of thing as I read here and elsewhere, do demonstrate how it's possible to have a contrarian view despite all the evidence that goes against its validity. But what else can I say really.

Be that as it may, those who seem to canonize him and put him on a pedestal way and above other greats, I do have a problem. He sits squarely among them in my view in terms of racing prowess and ability. Where he was most distinct was in his character. To his character and persona, he was a tour de force. You just don't see that sort of thing often and with the fact that he directed that sort of open commitment, energy, passion and determination into F1, makes him stand out magnanimously as one to be considered the greatest of all the sport has had the pleasure of having a part of it. He told it just as he saw it. He wasn't afraid to show his anger and rock the establishment as it were both on and off the track. He openly, and with depth of character, shared his emotions when winning and when not winning. Though he cared about how others saw him, no doubt, he managed to come off very well despite taking many risks in giving the wrong impression. As a result, he was never conservative. How darned refreshing it was to witness for many. This side of him has magnified the extent of his technical achievements for others IMO.

Edited by ali_M, 14 November 2012 - 14:10.


#1214 BoschKurve

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:23

One thing Senna benefited from was the start of the media crush that did not exist even 10 years prior to his peak in F1.

Had Senna been killed in 1974, or even 1984, how he would be viewed long-term is something else.

TV presentation changed everything with how these guys were seen, and the races were well more accessible for fans since a TV in 1994 wasn't quite the luxury it was 20 years earlier. 300 million watching someone die tends to affect how things are viewed after the fact as opposed to no one seeing Jim Clark killed in the forest.

#1215 as65p

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:26

Read the rest of the posts in this thread. My "POV" is by no means unique.


Read what I wrote. I didn't say that. I dispute you claim that it's "general consensus".

#1216 Wander

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:26

I've noticed, once again that, underestimating/discrediting Senna gets a lot more people raging than doing the same to Schumacher. Coincidence? I don't think so.


Of course. Schumacher has less fans.

#1217 Kyo

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:28

Couldn't you say the same about Schumacher, Fangio or Clark? In fact, couldn't you say the same about Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso today? There is no way of telling or knowing who was the fastest driver of all time - however, what is obvious is that Senna had certain... questionable traits.

His fanbase is no better, I'm afraid. Search up Senna, Go on any YouTube video, and write a comment claiming that there was a driver in history equally good or better than Senna. Within two days you will receive a bunch of bashing from highly-sensitive Senna admirers.

No, you can't say the same about these other drivers since none of them dominated their teammates like Senna did (I'm talking about qualifying speed here since we are discussing the fastest).

If you want to discuss who has the best/worse fanbase you should open a new topic, because this certainly has no relevance here, and instead of saying Senna is overrated, Prost was better and so on you should bring some sort of argument that explains why you think that.

#1218 LiJu914

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 14:37

No, you can't say the same about these other drivers since none of them dominated their teammates like Senna did (I'm talking about qualifying speed here since we are discussing the fastest).


"The fastest", should be measured by his race-pace - which can differ from his quali-pace (just aks Mr. Trulli) - because that´s where it matters the most.
Please see it as a general remark of mine - it has nothing to do with Senna in particular

Edited by LiJu914, 14 November 2012 - 14:38.


#1219 Kyo

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 15:18

"The fastest", should be measured by his race-pace - which can differ from his quali-pace (just aks Mr. Trulli) - because that´s where it matters the most.
Please see it as a general remark of mine - it has nothing to do with Senna in particular

Certainly you can have some differents concepts about what is fastest but when I talked about fastest I was talking about the ability of doing one specific lap as fast as possible, the ability to take everything the car and the track has to offer over a single lap. You obviously can have a fast driver that is just poor in overall terms, just like Trulli.

Edited by Kyo, 14 November 2012 - 15:19.


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#1220 SennaBoys

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 16:10

When I said Senna is overrated and sainted, you should know that I did not personally attack Senna, but rather his fans (there are too many unintelligent of those).

Secondly, saying that a driver isn't as good as Prost and not in the top 3 greatest drivers list of all time is not an insult.


When you read someone saying "Senna is so overrated. The guy wouldn't have been in the top 3 if it wasn't for his death. The most sainted driver ever.", it's hard to read anything into it other than a very personal attack on the driver, more so as you bring his death into it. If that's not what you meant then fair enough though that is quite a sweeping statement about a large number of fans.

Personally I don't think you can choose a top person out of the list of greats, there is no comparing say Ayrtons period in F1 to Jim Clarks. To me they are all greats though I do have a special place for Ayrton. maybe I'm one of the more intelligent Senna fans huh :D

I don't remember mentioning anything about comments regarding Alain Prost, :confused:

#1221 03011969

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 16:43

Of course. Schumacher has less fans.

"Has" or "appears to have" fewer fans?

I wonder if this is due to Schumacher-bashing being perennially fashionable on this forum, whereas criticism of Senna (and a driver with a similar helmet design) is frequently treated as a deeply immoral act.*

Perhaps Schumacher does have fewer fans, but who would know when putting your head above the parapet has always been a reliable way of getting shot at.




* To the point where some particularly deranged sole recently tried to equate Godwin's law with any criticism of Lewis! That is the level of distortion some have reached.

#1222 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 16:59

"Has" or "appears to have" fewer fans?

I wonder if this is due to Schumacher-bashing being perennially fashionable on this forum, whereas criticism of Senna (and a driver with a similar helmet design) is frequently treated as a deeply immoral act.*

Perhaps Schumacher does have fewer fans, but who would know when putting your head above the parapet has always been a reliable way of getting shot at.


:up: Lovely points made here. It's not popular to strongly support Schumi here. It's like supporting immorality!! :eek:

#1223 TifosiUSA

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 17:07

Of course. Schumacher has less fans.

That's debatable.

Edited by TifosiUSA, 14 November 2012 - 17:08.


#1224 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 17:41

One thing Senna benefited from was the start of the media crush that did not exist even 10 years prior to his peak in F1.

Had Senna been killed in 1974, or even 1984, how he would be viewed long-term is something else.

TV presentation changed everything with how these guys were seen, and the races were well more accessible for fans since a TV in 1994 wasn't quite the luxury it was 20 years earlier. 300 million watching someone die tends to affect how things are viewed after the fact as opposed to no one seeing Jim Clark killed in the forest.


But there are many modern drivers who would have benefitted from not being so closely followed leading to the reality of their imperfections becoming apparent. For this reason, modern drivers will not take on the type of legendary perfection as say Fangio. I wonder what it would have been like to have the sort of press coverage that exists today when Fangio's co-driver had to hand over his car to Fangio when Fangio had damaged his during a race or suffered mechanical failure. I'm not prepared to believe that team mates were always willing to do such a thing especially when they also still had a chance in the championship fight. Things have been documented in a way too glamorous and sterile fashion.

Nowadays, we're far more aware of what happens in and around the races.

One could argue that Senna did not benefit as from modern media coverage since it was also in place BEFORE he died and the same amount of fans watched all the other parts.

#1225 Kingshark

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 18:38

When you read someone saying "Senna is so overrated. The guy wouldn't have been in the top 3 if it wasn't for his death. The most sainted driver ever.", it's hard to read anything into it other than a very personal attack on the driver, more so as you bring his death into it. If that's not what you meant then fair enough though that is quite a sweeping statement about a large number of fans.

Na, I bashed Senna because he gets too much praise, and doesn't deserve the Godly status he is given.

I wonder if this is due to Schumacher-bashing being perennially fashionable on this forum, whereas criticism of Senna (and a driver with a similar helmet design) is frequently treated as a deeply immoral act.*

This.

Edited by Mandzipop, 14 November 2012 - 19:54.
Would you have gotten mad if I bashed Schumacher? No you wouldn't.


#1226 SennaBoys

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 18:55

Na, I bashed Senna because he gets too much praise, and doesn't deserve the Godly status he is given.


So first of all you say "When I said Senna is overrated and sainted, you should know that I did not personally attack Senna, but rather his fans" and now you do a complete turn about and say it was an attack on Senna ?? :lol:

Edited by Mandzipop, 14 November 2012 - 19:56.
You sound like one of those "unintelligent fans" you've talked of, try removing that chip on your shoulder, it'll make you more objective :)


#1227 Mandzipop

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 19:58

Can everyone please stay on topic and discuss the topic and not each other.

#1228 BoschKurve

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 20:00

But there are many modern drivers who would have benefitted from not being so closely followed leading to the reality of their imperfections becoming apparent. For this reason, modern drivers will not take on the type of legendary perfection as say Fangio. I wonder what it would have been like to have the sort of press coverage that exists today when Fangio's co-driver had to hand over his car to Fangio when Fangio had damaged his during a race or suffered mechanical failure. I'm not prepared to believe that team mates were always willing to do such a thing especially when they also still had a chance in the championship fight. Things have been documented in a way too glamorous and sterile fashion.

Nowadays, we're far more aware of what happens in and around the races.

One could argue that Senna did not benefit as from modern media coverage since it was also in place BEFORE he died and the same amount of fans watched all the other parts.


Well the whole thing too is that in Fangio's day, the notion of giving your car over to the #1 driver on the team was more acceptable. But the racing culture was altogether different back then relatively to what it is now. Had Fangio had the media crush that exists now, or something close to it, there's a possibility that Fangio may have still occupied the same level he does today. Part of it is that there were less giants before him, and what he was doing on the track had never been seen. The 1957 epic at the Nurburgring being a prime example. When you have less comparisons to anyone before you, it helps with forging a new image. It's the same thing with Jim Clark. He did things that had not been seen previously. But I do agree with you that how a teammate handing a car over to the #1 driver would be perceived and shaped by the media today is something else. I have a feeling if we saw such a thing happen in today's F1, this message board would probably just explode and disintegrate.

Although one thing I should add is that the changes in technology and car design also helped shape how they were seen. It definitely helps when the car a great driver is throwing around the track is capable of better times than ever seen before. The memories that are perhaps more endearing to me of Senna are of him in the JPS Lotus 97T and 98T. While the turbo era was fully in swing already, watching his car just dance around the track was stunning. The sense of awe, and shock at watching cars do something you never saw before certainly plays into how drivers were remembered. When I think of Jim Clark, I imagine him in the Lotus 49...and the funny thing is, he didn't even win the championship in 1967. But the match of him with that car, and watching him just annihilating the competition at Zandvoort is endearing.

While we may dislike certain drivers personally, one of the greatest gifts we can get is a great driver in a great car. It's the only way to see all of their skills fully on display to the world. Seeing things that have never been done before also shapes the media narrative for better, or for worse. The media has that whole penchant for embellishing things to increase interest no matter how misrepresented the facts may be. The media also has a short memory too, so it can work in an adverse manner.

#1229 Juan Kerr

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 20:01

Senna death certainly changed the perception about him, but to suggest that he´s No.1 just because of that, is still wrong imho, as there are still good arguments to put him there - at least in terms of pure skills (not saying that one "has to" put him in No.1 though).


Still the list is of course a document of its time. Most people working for the BBC or the media in general are between 30-50 years old. So at best they could follow F1 since the 70s in their childhood, but a large part probably didn´t even watch F1 prior to the 80s. And of course it makes a difference, whether you actually witness something yourself or just get told about it.
E.g. the storys about Fangios Nurburgring race 57 or Clarks Monza GP 67 etc. surely sound fascinating - but do i have the emotions about that like i had, when i watched an unknown Brazilian outclass the whole field under extremly difficult circumstances in a sh!tbox of car...or when some german guy established a lead of a full minute within just nine laps in typical ardennes weather? Not at all. And even if you try to stay objective about that matter, it´s difficult to ignroe completely.


A list like that will probably look quite different in ten or twenty years, irrespective of what certain drivers of the current generation will achieve...

The biggest joke on the list is Seb Vettel 8th in the all time greatest F1 list!!!! hahahahahahahah!!! honestly!! :) WHAT A COMPLETE JOKE.

#1230 Juan Kerr

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 20:04

So how exactly was Senna faster than Ascari, Fangio, Clark, Schumacher or even Hamilton/Alonso/Vettel today? You can't prove that.


Senna is so overrated. The guy wouldn't have been in the top 3 if it wasn't for his death. The most sainted driver ever. Even Prost was better than him.

Well ask all of those drivers and I'm sure they'll say he was. It's also very fair to say that they know better than you!

#1231 ali_M

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 22:34

Well the whole thing too is that in Fangio's day, the notion of giving your car over to the #1 driver on the team was more acceptable. But the racing culture was altogether different back then relatively to what it is now. Had Fangio had the media crush that exists now, or something close to it, there's a possibility that Fangio may have still occupied the same level he does today. Part of it is that there were less giants before him, and what he was doing on the track had never been seen. The 1957 epic at the Nurburgring being a prime example. When you have less comparisons to anyone before you, it helps with forging a new image. It's the same thing with Jim Clark. He did things that had not been seen previously. But I do agree with you that how a teammate handing a car over to the #1 driver would be perceived and shaped by the media today is something else. I have a feeling if we saw such a thing happen in today's F1, this message board would probably just explode and disintegrate.

Although one thing I should add is that the changes in technology and car design also helped shape how they were seen. It definitely helps when the car a great driver is throwing around the track is capable of better times than ever seen before. The memories that are perhaps more endearing to me of Senna are of him in the JPS Lotus 97T and 98T. While the turbo era was fully in swing already, watching his car just dance around the track was stunning. The sense of awe, and shock at watching cars do something you never saw before certainly plays into how drivers were remembered. When I think of Jim Clark, I imagine him in the Lotus 49...and the funny thing is, he didn't even win the championship in 1967. But the match of him with that car, and watching him just annihilating the competition at Zandvoort is endearing.

While we may dislike certain drivers personally, one of the greatest gifts we can get is a great driver in a great car. It's the only way to see all of their skills fully on display to the world. Seeing things that have never been done before also shapes the media narrative for better, or for worse. The media has that whole penchant for embellishing things to increase interest no matter how misrepresented the facts may be. The media also has a short memory too, so it can work in an adverse manner.


Nice...

There was also the strong element of bravery back then. Most drove with varying levels of leeway when racing wheel to wheel and when finding their personal limits of mechanical integrity and traction. A shunt back then was often rewarded by the ultimate price. The part about Fangio many years afterwards still experiencing some of the fear when contemplating that famous recovery drive at the Nurburgring is a nice example. What Fangio and Clark did was to comfortably take the car beyond where others couldn't while maintaining a reasonable margin of safety. They others were simply not similarly capable.

Nowadays it's more a matter of who can find the absolute limit and keep on it lap after lap. Fear of a shunt and death, as well as fear of mechanical issues aren't anywhere near what it was as back then and this has drastically changed how the guys go racing wheel to wheel as well as their personal level of comfort of the limits of the cars traction and mechanical integrity. The racing is therefore a lot closer without a driver being able to do a lap much quicker than before. That would be possible only if the tires allow it and not just because they choose to take a greater risk. When Alonso says that the car just isn't quick enough, it's just that. In the past, it's not only about quick enough, but also about whether or not the driver feels comfortable going faster lest he has a shunt.

Edited by ali_M, 15 November 2012 - 03:52.


#1232 schubacca

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 22:45

The list was good entertainment.

Benson or whoever put it up is entitled to their opinion, I guess.

For me, it is MS, AS, AP. That is purely because that is who I have seen.

There is nothing wrong with being in the top 4 or 5 though.

#1233 aditya-now

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 04:12

It's been an interesting list for what it's worth.


Although I took exception to the list in the positions 11 - 20, the major flaw to me still is to have Vettel placed before Alonso. For the rest, the real greats are hard to separate and when I read the list now, from P1 onwards, there is an intrinsic truth in the list. I have never seen the positionings of the first 20 like this, but there is merit in the way the list panned out.

Who were the persons voting for the BBC list?

#1234 vlado

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 06:37

What amazes me the most about MS is how many different regulations, cars, etc. he had to deal with over the years, and still produce the results that he did. Also.. the politics of Formula 1 can be pretty harsh, and he managed (for the most part) to contain all of that as well.

I don't know.. on pure talent/racing skill Senna is probably better, but as an "overall Formula 1 racer" I really don't see anyone even close to Schumacher. I am not sure what the BBC were looking for..



#1235 man

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 06:44

One thing that is certain about Senna is that how he was perceived by his rivals and the establishment changed over the years. During his Toleman and Lotus days he upset his rivals like Rosberg and Alboreto with his aggressive style and the British journo's had it in for him because of the Warwick/Dumfries saga. I think he evolved into one of the very,very best ever from 1991 where his tactical mistake-free and clean driving combined with his untouchable speed that was always there more than impressed pretty much everybody.

#1236 Nobody

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:25

I've noticed, once again that, underestimating/discrediting Senna gets a lot more people raging than doing the same to Schumacher. Coincidence? I don't think so.


That's because you should respect and pity the dead.
Not because they're were great, or evil, or famous.
But because they are dead.

The way a society treats its dead is a reflection of the way it treats its living. Maybe thats true about individuals as well.

#1237 ensign14

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:32

What amazes me the most about MS is how many different regulations, cars, etc. he had to deal with over the years, and still produce the results that he did.

Well, think about someone like Stirling Moss; won with front and rear engined cars. Note that whenever tyre management has been an issue Schumacher has struggled. And also note that practically every circuit today is cookie-cutter. Even as late as James Hunt drivers had to cope with the Ring in its brutal originality, as well as the twists of Monaco or the flat-out blind of original Spa and Monza.

#1238 SparkPlug

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 08:09

Well, well, quite a storm we have over here.

The biggest problem I have with this list is this : The main reason Schumacher has been punted down to number 4 on this list, is because of his unsporting behaviour on the race track from time to time. Benson's article on MS is quite clear on this.

The remaining so called advantages such as favoritism from a supplier / vendor (in case of Bridgestone), or team orders which are used to discredit Schumacher's records have been enjoyed by many if not all of the drivers in the top 10 in some form or the other.

If sporting ethics or "unfair advantages' are to be brought into an argument about Schumacher, the same has to be considered for Senna. And yes, he did have his fair share of both.

If pure skill in a racing cockpit is to be considered, there is no one who can prove decisively that one is better than the other.

The double standards used for rating these two drivers alone, make it pretty clear that the BBC is pushing an agenda with this worthless list. Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher have to be side by side in any list for me to even think of it of being credible.

Whether its #1 or #2 or #10 and #11 for all I care (based on some other standards). The two have a very similar signature on the sport called Formula 1, and to glorify one and villify another only puts the author(s) in poor light.

For what its worth, I'd place Senna behind Schumacher on any list. This inspite of me not being a fan of either by a mile due to their arrogant and haughty behaviour on the race track. If ethics are to be considered as a differentiator, both of these drivers wont find a mention in the top 10.

#1239 seahawk

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 08:34

Imho you can not blame Schumacher for his unfair moves in F1 and ignore them for Senna. Imho MSC is a product of Senna´s way of driving in F1. There are just 4 years between Suzuka 1990 and Adelaide 1994 and still todays perception of the events is totally different, although they were quite similar.

That said I do not care about such lists and if MSC is 4th, 3rd or 1st is of no importance.

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#1240 as65p

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 09:04

The funny thing is, the no. of people pointing out how Senna's transgressions are forgotten are effectively proving their own statement wrong - simply by invariably coming in numbers to point those very transgressions out, whenever Sennas name comes up. A good percentage taking a further step and blame Senna for Schumachers behaviour on top of it. :drunk:

So evidently, Sennas darker sides are not forgotten, far from it, and that's okay.

#1241 seahawk

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 09:21

The funny thing is, the no. of people pointing out how Senna's transgressions are forgotten are effectively proving their own statement wrong - simply by invariably coming in numbers to point those very transgressions out, whenever Sennas name comes up. A good percentage taking a further step and blame Senna for Schumachers behaviour on top of it. :drunk:

So evidently, Sennas darker sides are not forgotten, far from it, and that's okay.

Blaming Senna for Schumacher´s action is not what I did, I said Schumacher is a logical result of the way Senna won his titles. We can hardly expect Senna to win the way he did and expect a younger driver to be like "Hello Damon, let me move over so that you win the WDC and I don´t."

#1242 as65p

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 09:49

Blaming Senna for Schumacher´s action is not what I did, I said Schumacher is a logical result of the way Senna won his titles. We can hardly expect Senna to win the way he did and expect a younger driver to be like "Hello Damon, let me move over so that you win the WDC and I don´t."


I call that "blaming Senna". You can call it what you like, no problem.

Oh, and the usual hyperbole in "the way Senna won his titles", making it sound as if Senna had a Suzuka '90 moment every other race :yawnface:

#1243 seahawk

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 09:59

I call that "blaming Senna". You can call it what you like, no problem.

Oh, and the usual hyperbole in "the way Senna won his titles", making it sound as if Senna had a Suzuka '90 moment every other race :yawnface:


It is not like Schumacher had an 1994/97 moment every other race...

Edited by seahawk, 15 November 2012 - 10:00.


#1244 as65p

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:01

It is not like Schumacher had an 1994/97 moment every other race...


It's not like I ever implied such a thing, contrary to you with Senna (by way of your phrasing).

#1245 SparkPlug

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:05

The funny thing is, the no. of people pointing out how Senna's transgressions are forgotten are effectively proving their own statement wrong - simply by invariably coming in numbers to point those very transgressions out, whenever Sennas name comes up. A good percentage taking a further step and blame Senna for Schumachers behaviour on top of it. :drunk:

So evidently, Sennas darker sides are not forgotten, far from it, and that's okay.

Its not fans who wrote that list you know. The BBC has done it, or I'd dare say, their tabloid journalists have.

When it comes to Schumacher, they have used sporting ethics as the #1 reason why he shouldnt be considered the greatest of all time. Fair enough. But by the very same yardstick, Ayrton Senna also does not qualify for this title of the greatest of all time. Obviously in his case, its not all that important.




#1246 seahawk

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:06

Which I did not intentionally do or meant to imply, sorry if I did sound like I meant it that way.



#1247 as65p

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:11

Its not fans who wrote that list you know. The BBC has done it, or I'd dare say, their tabloid journalists have.

When it comes to Schumacher, they have used sporting ethics as the #1 reason why he shouldnt be considered the greatest of all time. Fair enough. But by the very same yardstick, Ayrton Senna also does not qualify for this title of the greatest of all time. Obviously in his case, its not all that important.


Well, t's not as if the terrible BBC tabloid journos are inventing a novelty by placing Senna above Schumacher in a top list.

#1248 as65p

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:11

Which I did not intentionally do or meant to imply, sorry if I did sound like I meant it that way.


:up:

#1249 Wander

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:14

I don't think anything Senna ever did affected anything Schumacher did in his career.

#1250 SparkPlug

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:15

Well, t's not as if the terrible BBC tabloid journos are inventing a novelty by placing Senna above Schumacher in a top list.

They are doing so by placing him much higher than Schumacher though.