Saturday, March 31, 2007

How the death of Senna affected Hamilton

Another great read from the Guardian, this one found at a site called, recalls how deeply moved Lewis Hamilton was when he heard the news of Ayrton Senna's tragic death. Mind you, Hamilton was only 9 years old at the time...!

From the article (written by Donald McRae): "I was nine when Ayrton Senna died, and he was my hero. I remember racing that weekend in Hoddesdon. My dad had a small Vauxhall Cavalier and a trailer at the back. We'd sit in the Cavalier and wait for my turn to race. And that day my step-mum came over to tell us Senna had just died. It hit me hard - but I never liked to show emotion in front of my dad. So I went behind the trailer and cried. That was the turning point of my life - because when you're so young, you believe people like Senna are invincible. And then you realise that they're also mortal. It made me understand I need to make the most of my talent."

Years later, he used his deep respect for Ayrton to help prepare for a Formula 3 race at Monaco: "With my engineers I watched an old Senna lap at Monaco. It was far harder to be an F1 driver then, and he basically drove the lap one-handed and had to correct the car four or five times. But he was still a second quicker than anyone. That's how he drove - on the very limit or just over it. That's what makes me want to be like Senna. Like him, I'm trying to be the perfect driver."

If I were Lewis Hamilton... I'd be pretty darn happy, that's for sure!

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