We are on Friday April 29, 1994, at the Imola circuit, in Italy. The begin of the San Marino Grand Prix will likely be given in nearly 48 hours, however the vehicles are already on the monitor.
These are free observe: the drivers familiarize themselves with the circuit, the groups develop the vehicles, and the primary reference occasions are established.
A younger Brazilian driver, Rubens Barrichello, subsequently embarks on a quick lap. The good friend and compatriot of the triple world champion Ayrton Senna, from whom he doesn’t fail to take common recommendation, drives a blue Jordan.
But arriving on a vibrator, at the sting of a quick curve, the automotive takes off. She hits the safety barrier head-on.
The shock is brutal, however Rubens Barichello is miraculous: though he has handed out, he has solely a sprained wrist and a damaged nostril.
The subsequent day, Saturday April 30, 1994, a dark-faced Ayrton Senna returned to the Imola circuit. The accident the day earlier than touched him all of the extra as a result of the sufferer was a good friend.
But the evil that’s expressed is deeper.
The Brazilian doubts himself. Entered with the Williams-Renault group, he’s the massive favourite for the 1994 title. And but, he doesn’t have full confidence in his automotive, and has made a sequence of errors for the reason that begin of the season.
Senna expresses his doubts concerning the security of the Imola circuit. But he nonetheless would not know that the scenario will take an entire new flip in just a few hours.
In the afternoon, throughout qualifying, Austrian driver Roland Ratzenberger’s Simtek hits a wall on the circuit at full pace.
On the screens of the Williams stand, Senna witnesses the collision. When the automotive stops, he sees the Austrian’s head tilt to the aspect. He is aware of it: a pilot has simply died.
In the boring silence that brutally fell on Imola, Senna goes to the scene of the accident. He tries to know.
All night time lengthy, he weighs the professionals and cons. Will he be current at the beginning or will he return to Brazil?
An indication of reconciliation
Sunday, May 1, 1994. While the Grand Prix is preparing, Senna delivers a “on board tour” to TF1: he feedback dwell on a lap of the circuit, flip after flip. It’s an train he is used to, however this morning Ayrton goes so as to add an incredible private contact to it.
“And to start, a hello to our friend Alain. We all miss you Alain!” Alain Prost: his everlasting rival, who has retired and joined the TF1 commentary group, hears it dwell.
He is touched to the center by this signal of friendship, which follows the best rivalry in Formula 1 historical past.
Two hours later, Senna is on the beginning grid. But it appears elsewhere.
The departure provides rise to a collision. The security automotive intervenes. When she returns, the vehicles resume the race.
It was 2:15 p.m. when Senna’s Williams-Renault approached the Tamburello curve at 330 km / h. It filters straight and hits the concrete wall at full pace.
Senna’s loss of life won’t be formally declared till two hours later, however at the microphone of TF1, Alain Prost already is aware of that he won’t ever see his lifelong rival once more.
Formula 1 has simply misplaced its finest driver. Brazil decrees nationwide mourning.
Just a few days later, the pilots Jackie Stewart, Emerson Fittipaldi, Gerhard Berger, Thierry Boutsen, Michele Alboreto, Rubens Barrichello, Roberto Moreno and Alain Prost carry within the floor the coffin of the triple world champion.
The disappearance of Senna will depart an indelible mark on the world of sport, but in addition on Formula 1 itself, triggering main developments within the security of vehicles and circuits.