Formula 1

Ayrton Senna’s First F1 Car Hits the Auction Block

The F1 racing legend first demonstrated his extraordinary talents in this car; huge money is expected to pass hands when it goes up for auction at Silverstone.

When Ayrton Senna first came on the scene in 1984, he was an unknown quantity. He had tested with McLaren, Williams, Brabham and Toleman, and ultimately signed with the latter as there was a vacant seat for the upcoming season. Initially he drove in a Toleman TG-183B, scoring a couple of sixth place finishes as well as failing to qualify for the San Marino race, the first and only time Senna posted a DNQ in his career.

A new chassis, the TG-184, was introduced for the season's fifth race, which ended in retirement, but in the following race at a rain-swept Monaco, Ayrton Senna made his mark. From 13th on the grid, Senna flew through the field and by lap 19 he had passed F1 veteran Nikki Lauda for 2nd place. Alain Prost was next in his sights and having clawed back as much as 4 seconds per lap, passed the man who would become his main rival on lap 32. Unfortunately for the Brazilian, it was one lap too late as the race was red flagged for safety, meaning final positions were recorded on lap 31.

Nevertheless, his extraordinary talents had been demonstrated and the Senna legend was born. In total, Senna raced in the car eleven times during the 1984 season, including a trio of podium finishes. Now the car he drove in that famous race is up for sale, and will hit the auction block at the Silverstone Auctions Spring Sale on 16 May at the Silverstone circuit. Fully restored and offered in running condition for the owner to hit the track in what is a significant piece of racing history, the race car that made Senna famous is set to be sold for a significant sum having been in private ownership for the past 16 years.

Considering a Senna-worn helmet from 1991 was sold for almost £75,000 and a racing suit for £36,000 at auction recently, expect the race car in which he first made his name to go for stupid money.

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