Ayrton Senna
Ayrton Senna

Celebrity Profile

Name: Ayrton Senna
Occupation: Race Car Driver
Gender: Male
Height: 175 cm (5' 9'')
Birth Day: March 21, 1960
Death Date: May 1, 1994 (age 34)
Age: Aged 34
Birth Place: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Zodiac Sign: Aries

Social Accounts

Height: 175 cm (5' 9'')
Weight: in kg - N/A
Eye Color: N/A
Hair Color: N/A
Blood Type N/A
Tattoo(s) N/A

Ayrton Senna

Ayrton Senna was born on March 21, 1960 in Sao Paulo, Brazil (34 years old). Ayrton Senna is a Race Car Driver, zodiac sign: Aries. Find out Ayrton Sennanet worth 2020, salary 2020 detail bellow.


He had a long-running rivalry with driver Alain Prost.

Does Ayrton Senna Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Ayrton Senna died on May 1, 1994 (age 34).

Net Worth

Net Worth 2020

$100 Million

Salary 2020

Not known

Ayrton Senna Salary Detail

For 1994, Senna was able to finally join the Williams team after Prost retired and was reportedly paid a $20 million salary. Senna was assigned car number 2, with teammate Damon Hill running car number 0 due to Prost, who would have been assigned number 1 had he returned, retiring. With Senna's arrival, a new sponsor came as well. Rothmans International came aboard as the primary backer for Williams, with Senna being one of their first drivers in the familiar white and navy livery.

Ayrton Senna Real Estate

Real Estate: He owned a number of properties around the world. In Brazil he owned an organic farm in Tatui, a beach house in Angra dos Reis, and an apartment in Sao Paulo. He also owned an apartment in Monaco and a large estate in Sintra, Portugal.

He was also passionate about a number of hobbies including water sports, boating, fishing, flying and riding motorcycles. He was known to fly his own British Aerospace 125 private jet from two and from his various residences. A typical British Aerospace 125 would sell for $15 – $20 million depending on modifications. He could also fly his own helicopter.

Before Fame

He first became interested in motorsports at the age of four.

Biography Timeline


Senna attended Colegio Rio Branco in the São Paulo neighbourhood of Higienópolis and graduated in 1977 with a grade 5 in physics along with other grades in mathematics, chemistry, and English. He later enrolled in a college that specialised in business administration, but dropped out after three months. Overall, his grades amounted up to 68%.

Senna went on to win the South American Kart Championship in 1977. He contested the Karting World Championship each year from 1978 to 1982, finishing runner-up in 1979 and 1980. In 1978, he was the teammate of Terry Fullerton, from whom Senna later felt was the rival he got the most satisfaction racing against also because of the lack of money and politics at that level.


In his karting days, Senna's helmet consisted of a plain white background with notable features absent. He experimented with several designs to satisfy him, such as a white, yellow, and green helmet, before settling on a design by Sid Mosca that included a yellow background with a green stripe surrounding the upper visor and a light metallic blue stripe surrounding the lower visor (both stripes are delineated in the other stripe's color) that was first seen in 1979; Mosca also painted helmets for Emerson Fittipaldi and Nelson Piquet.


In 1981, Senna moved to England to begin single-seater racing, winning the RAC and Townsend-Thoreson Formula Ford 1600 Championships that year with the Van Diemen team.


That season, Senna took two more podium finishes—third at the British and Portuguese Grands Prix—and placed 9th in the Drivers' Championship with 13 points overall. He did not take part in the Italian Grand Prix after he was suspended by Toleman for being in breach of his contract by entering talks with Lotus for 1985 without informing the Toleman team first. Although Senna did have a £100,000 buyout clause in his contract, the team had to be informed before discussions with another team started. Senna became the first driver Lotus had signed not personally chosen by team founder Colin Chapman, who had died in 1982.


In 1983, Senna drove in the British Formula Three Championship for the West Surrey Racing team. He dominated the first half of the season until Martin Brundle, driving a similar car for Eddie Jordan Racing, closed the gap in the second part of the championship. Senna won the title at the final round after a closely fought and, at times, acrimonious battle with the Briton. In November that year, Senna also triumphed at the inaugural Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix with Teddy Yip's Toyota-powered Theodore Racing Team.

In 1983, Senna tested for Formula One teams Williams, McLaren, Brabham, and Toleman. Peter Warr of Lotus, Ron Dennis of McLaren, and Bernie Ecclestone of Brabham made offers for testing in 1984 and presented long-term contracts that tied Senna to driving later on. During his test for Williams at the 3.149-km (1.957-mi) Donington Park circuit, Senna completed 40 laps and was quicker than the other drivers, including Williams's reigning World Champion Keke Rosberg. Neither Williams nor McLaren had a vacancy for the 1984 season. Both Williams boss Frank Williams and McLaren boss Ron Dennis noted that Senna insisted that he got to run their cars before anyone else (other than their regular drivers such as Rosberg) so that he would have the best chance of a good showing by having a fresh car.

Peter Warr actually wanted to replace Nigel Mansell with Senna at Lotus, but their British-based title sponsor, Imperial Tobacco (John Player & Sons), wanted a British driver. Senna, however, was determined to drive that season and certainly on his own terms. Senna's test for Brabham occurred at Circuit Paul Ricard in November 1983. Senna impressed the Brabham team and was linked to their second seat. However, the team's main sponsor, Italian dairy company Parmalat, wanted an Italian driver. Brabham's second car was eventually shared by brothers Teo and Corrado Fabi, while Piquet convinced Ecclestone to sign his friend Roberto Moreno as the test driver. Consequently, Senna joined Toleman, a relatively new team, using less competitive Pirelli tyres. Venezuelan Johnny Cecotto, a former Grand Prix motorcycle racing world champion, was his teammate. During 1984, Senna hired Nuno Cobra to assess his physical condition due to his concern over his low weight.


Senna was married to Lilian de Vasconcelos Souza from 1981 until 1982. Vasconcelos, whom he had known since childhood, had difficulty adapting to her husband's racing life in England. Vasconcelos later said: "I was his second passion. His first passion was racing... There was nothing more important in the world for him, not family, not wife, nothing." Though he did not have much of an income early in his racing career, Senna insisted on supporting his wife with no help from his father out of a sense of pride. The marriage ended in divorce. Senna then courted Adriane Yamin, daughter of an entrepreneur from São Paulo, who was 15 years old when they began the relationship in 1985 and often chaperoned by her mother during meetings with Senna. They were briefly engaged, but the relationship was broken off by Senna in late 1988. Senna dated Brazilian TV star Xuxa from late 1988 until 1990. He then dated Christine Ferracciu, who lived with him at his homes in Monaco and Portugal, on and off between 1990 and 1991. Senna also had an affair with American model Carol Alt, and briefly dated models Marjorie Andrade and Elle Macpherson. At the time of his death, Senna was in a relationship with Brazilian model, and later TV personality, Adriane Galisteu.

According to Mosca, the blue and green stripes symbolised movement and aggression, while the overall yellow colour symbolised youth; the three colors were also identifiable with the Flag of Brazil. The helmet never had significant changes, apart from sponsorship. One such change was that Senna occasionally altered the stripe from blue to black. The tone of yellow changed a number of times, while usually a rich sunburst yellow, in 1985 and 1986 in some races, he used a fluorescent neon yellow colour. In 1994, the helmet was a lighter, paler yellow to complement the blue and white of the Williams car. He used a number of helmet brands throughout his career. From 1977 to 1989, he used Bell (Star – '77 to '82, XFM-1 – '83 to '89), from 1990 to 1991 Honda's own Rheos brand, 1992 to 1993 he used Shoei (X-4) and for 1994 he returned to using Bell (M3 Kevlar). The helmet worn by Senna in the fatal race was returned to Bell in 2002 and was incinerated while family members watched.


Team Lotus had a new engine deal in 1987, running the same turbocharged Honda V6 engines as Williams had used to win the previous year's Constructors' Championship, and with them came a new teammate, 34-year-old Japanese driver, Satoru Nakajima, who was a test driver employed directly by Honda. The team guaranteed Senna contractually preferential treatment over Nakajima in the allocation of equipment. Senna started the season with mixed fortunes: a podium at the San Marino Grand Prix was tempered by controversy at the following race at Spa-Francorchamps, where he collided with Mansell, and afterward in the pits an irate Mansell grabbed Senna by the throat and had to be restrained by Lotus mechanics. Senna then won two races in a row, which helped him take the lead in the World Championship: the ensuing Monaco Grand Prix (the first of his record six victories at the Principality) and the Detroit Grand Prix, his second victory in two years at the angular Michigan street circuit and the first ever for an active suspension F1 car. As the championship progressed however, it became evident that the Williams cars had the advantage over the rest of the field, the gap between the Honda-engined teams made most obvious at the British Grand Prix, where Mansell and Piquet in the superior Williams cars lapped the Lotuses of Senna and Nakajima who finished 3rd and 4th respectively. Senna became dissatisfied with his chances at Lotus and at Monza it was announced that he would be joining McLaren for 1988. Senna finished the season strongly, coming second in the final two races in Japan and Australia, however post-race scrutineering at the final race found the brake ducts of his Lotus to be wider than permitted by the rules and he was disqualified, bringing his last and most successful season with Lotus to a sour end. Senna was classified third in the final standings, with 57 points, with six podium finishes and only one pole position. This season marked a turning point in Senna's career as, throughout the year, he built a deep relationship with Honda, which paid big dividends, as McLaren had secured Williams's supply of Honda's V6 turbo engines for 1988.


In 1988, due to the relationship he had built up with Honda throughout the 1987 season with Lotus, and with the approval of McLaren's number-one driver and then-double world champion, Alain Prost, Senna joined the McLaren team. The foundation for a fierce competition between Senna and Prost was laid, culminating in a number of dramatic race incidents between the two over the next five years. However, the experienced pair also quickly realized, despite their personal rivalry, they had to work together, especially in testing, to keep ahead of their main opposition from Ferrari, Williams, Benetton and Lotus.

One notable incident of the year was at the Monaco Grand Prix, where Senna outqualified Prost by 1.4 seconds and led for most of the race before crashing on lap 67. Instead of returning to the pit lane, Senna was so distressed by his own mistake that went back to his apartment and did not contact the team until he walked into the pit garage as they were packing up later that night. After team manager Jo Ramirez called him through his Monaco apartment's cleaner hours after he had crashed, Senna was still devastated by his own mistake. As the television cameras had not captured his crash, team boss Ron Dennis did not know what had caused his DNF until then, though Prost speculated that judging from the tyre marks, it appeared as though Senna had clipped the inside barrier at Portier, which pitched him into the outside guard rail. At the Portuguese Grand Prix, Prost made a slightly faster start than Senna, but the Brazilian, as he would a number of times- dived into the fast first corner ahead. Prost responded and went to pass Senna at the end of the first lap. Senna swerved to block Prost, forcing the Frenchman to nearly run into the pit wall at 290 km/h (180 mph). Prost kept his foot down and soon edged Senna into the first corner and started pulling away. Prost, normally a calm individual was angered by Senna's manoeuvre, and the Brazilian got away with a warning from the FIA. At the post-race team debrief, Prost voiced his anger at the move which prompted Senna to apologize to Prost for the incident. Ultimately, the pair won 15 of 16 races in the dominant McLaren MP4/4 in 1988 with Senna coming out on top, winning his first Formula One world championship title by taking eight wins to Prost's seven. Prost scored more points over the season, but had to drop three-second places as only the 11 best scores counted, meaning that Senna best Prost by 3 points.

However, the biggest incident of the year happened at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. With two laps remaining, Senna held a five-second lead over the Ferraris of Gerhard Berger and Michele Alboreto, who were closing in on the McLaren (Prost had earlier retired with a badly misfiring engine). Going into the Rettifilo Chicane, Senna closed on the Williams of Jean-Louis Schlesser (standing in for the unwell Nigel Mansell). Schlesser steered wide, attempting to give Senna room to lap him, losing then regaining control to avoid going into the sand trap, and the two collided; Senna's car was beached on top of a curb and had stalled. Ferrari went on to finish 1–2, the first in an Italian Grand Prix since the death of the team's founder Enzo Ferrari. This proved to be the only race McLaren did not win in 1988.

That year, as had been the case in 1988 and 1990, Senna won the "International Racing Driver Award" granted by British magazine Autosport annually. The award was presented by Stirling Moss and Senna was interviewed on stage by Formula 1 commentator, Murray Walker. During the interview, Senna confirmed that at the Fédération Internationale du Sport Automobile (FISA) gala dinner in Paris the day before, under the auspices of Jackie Stewart, Senna had given one of his helmets to his renowned foe, Jean-Marie Balestre, because of the sincere atmosphere that presented itself and as an insulting psychological gesture.

Senna was awarded the No.1 driver of the year by the editor of the AUTOCOURSE annual 3 times, in 1988, 1991 and 1993, as well as taking runner up spot in 1985, 1989, 1990 and 1992. However Senna was so outraged by the editor dropping him from No.1 to No.2 in the 1990 listings as a result of Senna's first corner crash at Suzuka in 1990 with Alain Prost, a piece of driving the editor considered completely reckless that despite being given the No.1 driver award in 1991, Senna refused to write the usually customary foreword by the year's World Champion, instead Honda's Head of Racing wrote the foreword instead. The AUTOCOURSE editor wrote in 1993 that Senna was "a uniquely flawed genius and an intense egocentric, absolutely matchless when it comes to wet weather genius and yet sometimes afflicted by an unsettled mood." In the 2000 edition of AUTOCOURSE celebrating 50 years of Formula 1, the editor acknowledged that "Senna was the one driver who genuinely cared where he was ranked in the Top 10 drivers by the AUTOCOURSE editorial" – and that Senna took being placed below his rivals as a personal slight.

Senna reportedly had access to three of these cars: a black 1993 NSX in Brazil, which he ordered to his specifications, bearing license plate BSS-8888, which represents his initials for "Beco" – his childhood nickname – "Senna da Silva" and 8 to commemorate his first F1 championship in 1988; a red one with licence plate SX-25-59, which was loaned to him by Honda Portugal; a black one purchased by Antonio Carlos de Almeida Braga, who was a close personal friend, manager, and mentor of Ayrton Senna. Senna also appeared in different commercials for the 4th generation Honda Prelude.


Senna enjoyed a range of physical activities including running, waterskiing, jet skiing, and paddleboarding. He also had several hobbies, such as flying real and model planes and helicopters, boating, fishing, and riding his favourite Ducati motorbikes. His private jet was a British Aerospace 125, and he also piloted his own helicopter between his residences in Brazil along with travelling to races. For his 29th birthday in 1989, the Brazilian Air Force gave Senna a flight on one of their jet fighters (a Dassault Mirage III), which bears commemorative livery and is now exhibited at the Aerospace Museum of Rio de Janeiro.

Many safety improvements were made in the sport following Senna's and Ratzenberger's deaths and Barrichello's crash. These include improved crash barriers, redesigned tracks, higher crash safety standards (such as larger sills along the driver cockpit) and major cuts to engine power. The Tamburello corner and other parts of the Imola circuit were altered for 1995. This was despite calls for action in 1989, after a serious high-speed crash in which Senna's friend, Gerhard Berger, suffered burns to his hand. No action took place after that crash because, following an inspection by Senna and Berger, they ended up siding with officials who had, for years, claimed that the wall could not be moved further back due to a river nearby. Revised on-track medical procedures also saw personnel hold up curtains at crash sites, to prevent the public from viewing distressing images as had occurred on live television with Senna.


In 1990, Senna took a commanding lead in the championship with six wins, two-second places, and three-thirds. With Prost gone to Ferrari, he also had a new teammate in Austrian driver and friend Gerhard Berger. Among his victories were the opening round on the wide streets of Phoenix, in which he diced for the lead for several laps with Jean Alesi's Tyrrell before coming out on top, and in Germany, where he fought Benetton driver Alessandro Nannini throughout the race for the win. Senna won six races, including another Monaco win, and as the season reached its final quarter, however, Alain Prost in his Ferrari rose to the challenge with five wins, including a crucial victory in Spain where he and teammate Nigel Mansell finished 1–2 for the Scuderia. Senna had gone out with a damaged radiator, and the gap between Senna and Prost was now reduced to 9 points with two races remaining.

A year later, after taking his third world championship, Senna explained to the press his actions of the previous year in Suzuka. He maintained that prior to qualifying fastest, he had sought and received assurances from race officials that pole position would be changed to the left, clean side of the track (where the racing line was), only to find this decision reversed by Jean-Marie Balestre after he had taken pole. Senna said that he was not going to accept what he saw as unfair decision-making by Balestre, including his 1989 disqualification and the incorrect pole position in 1990. Senna stated that no matter what happened, he would not yield the corner and that Prost taking his normal racing line would result in an accident. Prost later went on record criticising Senna's actions as "disgusting", saying that he seriously considered retiring from the sport after that incident. During an interview with Eurosport at the Australian Grand Prix Prost revealed that he had seen the Honda engine telemetry at Suzuka, and that it showed that Senna had kept his foot absolutely flat through the 4th gear corner when he had hit Prost- Senna had not even taken his foot off the accelerator to change down to 4th for this corner, revealing that Senna had taken Prost out on purpose.


In 1991, Senna became the youngest ever three-time world champion, taking seven wins and increasing his pole position record to 60 from 127 events. Prost, because of the downturn in performance at Ferrari, the likes of which littered the team's history, was no longer a serious competitor. In preseason testing, Senna made public misgivings about the car's competitiveness with the new Honda V12, stating that the engine was not as powerful as the prior year's V10. Senna won the first four races in Phoenix, Brazil, Imola and Monaco as his rivals struggled to match his pace and reliability. By midseason, Nigel Mansell in the quick Adrian Newey designed Williams-Renault was able to put up a challenge. Before the Mexican Grand Prix, Senna was injured in a jet-skiing accident near São Paulo for which he required stitches on the back of his head. During qualifying for that Grand Prix, he attempted to take the banked 180-degree Peraltada corner (Mexico City circuit's fastest corner) faster than normal, ending up spinning off the track and rolling over the car after crashing into a tyre barrier. At the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, Senna's car had come to a halt on the final lap, but he was not left stranded out on the circuit, as race-winner Mansell pulled over on his parade lap and allowed the Brazilian to ride on the Williams side-pod back to the pits. During the Spanish Grand Prix, Senna and Mansell went wheel-to-wheel with only centimetres to spare, at over 320 km/h (200 mph) down the main straight, a race which the Briton eventually won.


In 1992, Senna's determination to win manifested itself in dismay at McLaren's inability to challenge Williams's all-conquering FW14B car. The FW14B, thanks in part to its aerodynamic-enhancing active suspension and powerful Renault V10 engine was much faster than any other car that season. McLaren's new car for the season had several shortcomings. A delay occurred in getting the new MP4/7A model running (it was McLaren's first car with a semi-automatic gearbox and it debuted in the third race of the season, the Brazilian Grand Prix) and in addition to lacking active suspension, the new car suffered from reliability issues and was unpredictable in fast corners, while its Honda V12 engine was no longer the most powerful on the circuit. During practice for the second race of the season in Mexico on a badly maintained and extremely bumpy circuit (thanks to it being located in a geologically active area) Senna and other drivers were heavily critical of, his car hit a bump at one of the circuit's Esses corners that caused a loss of downforce and a hard crash into a concrete retaining wall. He had to be extricated from the car by circuit doctors wearing a neck brace; although he raced the next day, albeit retiring from the race due to gearbox failure. Senna scored wins in Monaco, Hungary, and Italy that year. During qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix, French driver Érik Comas crashed heavily and Senna was the first to arrive at the scene. Senna could hear the stricken car's engine revving at max RPM, and he exited his car and ran across the track to help the Frenchman and shut off the car's screaming engine (which could have blown and started a fire at any moment), disregarding his own safety in an effort to aid a fellow driver. He later visited Comas in the hospital. His actions won universal praise from within Formula One and seemed to soften his hard-nosed image. Senna finished fourth overall in the championship, behind the Williams duo of Mansell and Riccardo Patrese, and Benetton's Michael Schumacher.

Given this scenario, Senna secured an IndyCar testing session with the support of compatriot and Penske driver, Emerson Fittipaldi. In December 1992, in fact, Senna visited Firebird International Raceway in Chandler, Arizona near Phoenix in the United States to test a 1992 Penske PC-21 CART Indianapolis car. Unlike the more advanced F1 cars, this IndyCar was powered by a turbo Chevrolet-Ilmor V8, had a traditional transmission with clutch pedal and iron brakes, and was markedly heavier due to its bigger physical size in comparison to a smaller Formula One car; IndyCar teams were run with significantly smaller budgets than F1 teams and did not have to make their own cars. To familiarise himself, Senna initially ran 14 relatively slow laps before completing a further 10 laps on the same tyres and setting a best time of 49.09 seconds. By comparison, Fittipaldi had set a best time of 49.70 seconds, which he later improved to 48.5 seconds, only by using the new 1993 Penske PC-22 at his disposal during this test session. In a 2018 interview, Fittipaldi revealed that Penske boss Roger Penske was ready to enter a third car for Senna to drive at the 1993 Indianapolis 500- one of the most prestigious and important races in the world and a race that defending champion Mansell was competing at (who had left F1 for CART), but McLaren boss Ron Dennis found out it was a very serious deal and banned Senna from competing at Indianapolis.

In 1992, Senna received a fine and a temporary driving ban in the UK after driving a Porsche at speeds up to 121 mph on the M25 near London.


For 1993, attempts were made by McLaren boss Ron Dennis to secure a supply of the dominant Renault V10 engines that Williams had found great success with. When these failed, Senna went to Williams himself and sought to take one of their two open rides, as defending champion Nigel Mansell joined the IndyCar Series for 1993 and longtime second driver Riccardo Patrese left to drive at Benetton alongside Michael Schumacher. However, despite Senna going so far as to be willing to forfeit his annual salary just to drive one of Williams' Renaults, this too would fail. Alain Prost was returning to F1 for the first time since the penultimate race of the 1991 season (he had been fired by Ferrari prior to the end of 1991, received a massive severance package as part of a non-compete clause, and took leave for the 1992 season) and filled one of the vacant Williams seats. His contract included a caveat that he had veto power over who he would team with in the other car for 1993; since he still had ill will toward his former McLaren teammate, Prost used that veto to freeze out Senna and force him into what was now a lame duck season for the Brazilian at McLaren. Faced with this, during a press conference at the season-opening test session at the Estoril Circuit on the Portuguese Riviera, an infuriated Senna called Prost a coward, leading to some commentators stating that what Prost had done was no different from Senna vetoing Derek Warwick from joining Lotus in 1986, but they did not take into account that Senna's chances of winning the championship were much higher in 1993.


For 1994, Senna was able to finally join the Williams team after Prost retired and was reportedly paid a $20 million salary. Senna was assigned car number 2, with teammate Damon Hill running car number 0 due to Prost, who would have been assigned number 1 had he returned, retiring. With Senna's arrival, a new sponsor came as well. Rothmans International came aboard as the primary backer for Williams, with Senna being one of their first drivers in the familiar white and navy livery.

It was Senna's worst start to a Formula One season, failing to finish or score points in the first two races, despite taking pole position both times. Schumacher was leading Senna in the Drivers' Championship by 20 points. In occasion of the 20th anniversary of Senna's death, Ferrari president Luca Cordero di Montezemolo revealed that, on 27 April 1994, he had held discussions at his home in Bologna with Senna about a future Ferrari engagement.

The 1994 season was the subject of sweeping rule changes, most notably banning the use of electronic "driver aids" such as active suspension, anti-lock brakes, traction control and launch control. From the start, suspicion of foul play mainly involving the Benetton team was said to have troubled Senna. For example, instead of returning to the pit area after his first lap retirement at the Pacific Grand Prix, Senna opted to stand near the first corner and watch the cars complete the race to see if he could detect whether any now banned traction control system was being used. He returned to the Williams box after the race suspicious that the Benetton car was illegal. Indeed, in an interview for the 20th anniversary of Ayrton Senna's death, his then teammate, Damon Hill, revealed that Senna had "concluded that there was, what he regarded, as unusual noises from the engine" with "special tweak" giving Benetton an advantage.

Senna died aged 34 after succumbing to fatal injuries sustained during the San Marino Grand Prix, on 1 May 1994.

The 1994 San Marino Grand Prix was held on the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari circuit located in Imola, Italy, between 28 April, and 1 May 1994.

Senna's death was considered by many of his Brazilian fans to be a national tragedy, and the Government of Brazil declared three days of national mourning. The Italian Air Force offered to fly the coffin back to Brazil, but the Senna family wished that it return home in a Brazilian plane. Contrary to airline policy and out of respect, Senna's coffin was allowed to be flown back to his home country in the passenger cabin of a VARIG McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 airliner, accompanied by his distraught younger brother, Leonardo, and close friends. The plane was escorted by fighter jets into São Paulo–Guarulhos International Airport on 4 May 1994, where it was met by the Mayor of São Paulo, Paulo Maluf, and the state's governor, Luís Antônio Fleury. The coffin was carried by soldiers from the Air Force Police to a fire engine, where eight cadets from the Military Police Academy mounted guard as it carried the coffin on the 20-mile journey into the city. Leading the motorcade were 17 police motorbikes, and 2,500 policemen lined the route to keep the crowds at bay.

An estimated three million people flocked to the streets of Senna's hometown of São Paulo to offer him their salute. This is widely accepted as the largest recorded gathering of mourners in modern times. Over 200,000 people filed past as his body lay in state at the Legislative Assembly building in Ibirapuera Park. After the public viewing, a 21-gun salute was fired by the 2nd Artillery Brigade and seven Brazilian Air Force jets flew in a diamond formation as the funeral procession made its way to Morumbi Cemetery. Many prominent motor-racing figures attended Senna's state funeral, such as team managers Ken Tyrrell, Peter Collins, Ron Dennis, and Frank Williams, and driver Jackie Stewart. The pallbearers included drivers Gerhard Berger, Michele Alboreto, Alain Prost, Thierry Boutsen, Damon Hill, Rubens Barrichello, Roberto Moreno, Derek Warwick, Maurício Gugelmin, Hans Stuck, Johnny Herbert, Pedro Lamy, Maurizio Sala, Raul Boesel, Emerson Fittipaldi, Wilson Fittipaldi, and Christian Fittipaldi. Neither Sid Watkins nor Jo Ramírez, the McLaren team coordinator, could bear to attend because they were so grief-stricken. Senna's family did not allow FOM president Bernie Ecclestone, a friend of Senna's, to attend the ceremony, after an altercation between Ecclestone and Senna's brother Leonardo at Imola regarding Ecclestone's misconstrued reaction to the news of Ayrton's death and the fact that the race had not been abandoned after his accident. FIA President Max Mosley instead attended the funeral of Ratzenberger, which took place on 7 May 1994, in Salzburg, Austria. Mosley said in a press conference 10 years later, "I went to his funeral because everyone went to Senna's. I thought it was important that somebody went to his." Senna's grave bears the epitaph "Nada pode me separar do amor de Deus", which means "Nothing can separate me from the love of God" (a reference to Romans 8:38–39).

Senna owned several properties, including an organic farm in Tatuí, Brazil (where he built a go-kart track in 1991), a beach house in Angra dos Reis, Brazil, an apartment in São Paulo, Brazil, an apartment in Monaco, an estate in Sintra, on the Portuguese Riviera, and a house in Algarve, Portugal. In 1994, the latter residence is where Senna let his last girlfriend, Adriane Galisteu, stay for the start of the European leg of the F1 season. The pair had met the year before at a hospitality event by McLaren sponsor, Shell, as part of the Brazilian Grand Prix for which Galisteu had to audition through a model agency, to work as a hostess.

Senna was also instrumental in bringing Audi cars into his native country, both as an import and manufacturing business. Audi entered Brazil in 1994 via Senna's company, Senna Import, founded in 1993. Sales began in April that year, just a month before his untimely death. In 1999, Audi Senna was created as a joint venture of Audi with Senna Import. Aside from the black NSX mentioned above, Senna's other personal car in 1994 was a silver Audi 100 S4 Avant.

In July 1994, the Brazil national football team dedicated their World Cup victory to Senna, and collectively held a banner on the field after defeating Italy in the final. Senna had met various members of the squad, including Ronaldo and Leonardo, three months earlier in Paris, telling them "this is our year". Throughout the rest of the 1994 season, Senna was commemorated in various ways. Damon Hill, along with Michael Schumacher, dedicated their individual success to Senna with Hill's victory in the Spanish Grand Prix and Schumacher's world-championship victory in the Australian Grand Prix.

The organisers of the former Formula One Grand Prix street circuit in Adelaide, South Australia, renamed the first chicane the "Senna Chicane" in his honour in 1994, and also a road in the Adelaide suburb of Wingfield is named "Senna Road". A shortened version of the Adelaide circuit (which remains the site of Senna's last Formula One win) and the chicane remain in use for local motorsport events, and a commemorative concrete plaque installed in 1995, bearing Senna's signature and hand prints, is also located there. The Adelaide circuit was said to be a favourite of Senna's, and he was reportedly unhappy about the upcoming shift of venue from Adelaide to Melbourne in 1996. Other motorsports circuits have similarly named sections of their track after Senna, such as the Circuito de Jerez in Spain, Hockenheimring in Germany, the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Canada and the Autódromo Juan y Oscar Gálvez in Argentina.


At the 1995 Brazilian Grand Prix, Rubens Barrichello incorporated part of Senna's helmet design into his own. For the 2011 Brazilian Grand Prix, another variant of Senna's helmet was used by Lewis Hamilton and by Barrichello too. Hamilton used the design with permission from Senna's sister Viviane and the helmet was later sold in support of the IAS. At the 2015 Brazilian Grand Prix, Hamilton again varied his helmet design (this time, the rear only given FIA restrictions on design changes in force from 2015) accompanied with a Twitter announcement stating "Just for you, Brazil!! A tribute to the greatest".


Between 1996 and 1998, to pay tribute to Senna, the Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati produced three special "Senna" editions of their 916 superbike. Ducati was at the time owned by Claudio Castiglioni, a personal friend of Senna who was an avid Ducati owner and endorsed the release of this 916 in March 1994. In 2002, under the presidency of Castiglioni, MV Agusta also released the special-edition F4 750 Senna motorbike followed by the F4 Senna 1000 in 2006. In both instances, each edition was limited to 300 units and, just like with the Ducati, all profits from sales were donated to the Ayrton Senna Foundation. In 2013, Ducati also released a special edition of their new top-of-the-range sportbike, the 1199 Panigale S Senna. In 2014, the IAS commissioned a commemorative Vespa that was auctioned for charity. It was custom-painted in the colours of Ayrton Senna's helmet by Alan Mosca, the son of Senna's helmet design creator, Sid, based on more than 50 "T5 Pole Position" models of the PX125 scooter that Ayrton won as part of the award to Formula 1 polesitters introduced by Piaggio in 1985.


Italian law requires that accidents resulting in a fatality must be investigated for any criminal culpability, with the associated scene of the accident secured and the activities that led to the fatality, suspended forthwith. Senna's death was thus the subject of criminal proceedings in Italy, which saw key Williams team members investigated and charged with manslaughter. The original trial in 1997 concluded with acquittals on the grounds that the prosecution had failed to prove its case. This prosecution culminated with verdict no. 15050 handed down by the Italian Supreme Court of Cassation on 13 April 2007, which stated: "It has been determined that the accident was caused by a steering column failure. This failure was caused by badly designed and badly executed modifications. The responsibility of this falls on Patrick Head, culpable of omitted control". Head, however, was never arrested because the Italian statute of limitation for manslaughter is 7 years and 6 months, and the final verdict was pronounced 13 years after the accident.


One of the most extravagant claims involving Senna's past partners was made by Edilaine de Barros, a former model better known as Marcella Praddo. She alleged that the couple dated from 1992 to 1994. Weeks after Senna's death, de Barros' child, Victoria, was born and claims that Senna was the father were soon made but abandoned following rejection of those claims by the Senna family. Years later, after joining a religious sect, the former model was convinced to sue against the estate of Senna. In 2000, DNA tests of hair and saliva samples given by Senna's parents conclusively proved that he was not the father of de Barros' child.

In April 2000, Senna was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. That year, the UK public also voted Senna's opening lap of the 1993 European Grand Prix, the 43rd in the list of the 100 Greatest Sporting Moments.


Senna was close friends with McLaren teammate Gerhard Berger, and the two were always playing practical jokes on each other. Berger is quoted as saying, "He taught me a lot about our sport, I taught him to laugh." In the documentary film The Right to Win, made in 2004 as a tribute to Senna, Frank Williams notably recalls that as good a driver as Senna was, ultimately "he was an even greater man outside of the car than he was in it."

In 2004, a book called Ayrton: The Hero Revealed (original title: Ayrton: O Herói Revelado) was published in Brazil for the 10th anniversary of his death. Senna remains a national hero in Brazil and his grave attracts more visitors than the graves of John F. Kennedy, Marilyn Monroe, and Elvis Presley combined.

In addition, to mark the 10th anniversary of Senna's death, on 21 April 2004, over 10,000 people attended a charity match in a football stadium near Imola. The game was organised by several devoted Italian and Canadian fans of Senna, bringing the Brazil team that won the 1994 World Cup to face the "Nazionale Piloti", an exhibition team composed exclusively of top race car drivers. Senna had been a part of the latter in 1985. Michael Schumacher, Jarno Trulli, Rubens Barrichello, Fernando Alonso, and many others faced the likes of Dunga, Careca, Taffarel, and several of the team that won the FIFA World Cup in the United States 10 years earlier. The match finished 5–5 and the money was donated to the IAS. Viviane Senna, the president of the IAS, was also involved in the kick-off of this match. That same weekend, Bernie Ecclestone revealed that he still believed Senna was and remained the best F1 driver he had ever seen.


In 2006, the Japanese public ranked Senna 22nd in a survey of their favourite persons in history. The results were part of The Top 100 Historical Persons in Japan program broadcast by Nippon TV on 7 May that year.


In 2007, Prince Albert of Monaco unveiled a plaque in honour of Senna in a ceremony that was attended by Vivane Senna. An exhibition also took place that showcased Senna's victories around Monaco, along with his helmets that were borrowed from Senna's family and a selection of McLaren cars raced by Senna that were brought over from Motegi.


He has been voted the best driver of all time in various motorsport polls, including F1 Racing magazine's 2004 poll, and German newspaper Bild am Sonntag's poll of current drivers in 2010. In 2009, a poll of 217 current and former Formula One drivers conducted by Autosport magazine named Senna as "the greatest Formula One driver who ever lived". In 2012, BBC Sport journalists voted Senna as the greatest Formula One driver of all time, after naming their top 20 greatest drivers in a countdown on their website. In 1993, a poll of F1 drivers gave Senna a near-unanimous vote as the best driver in F1.

On 21 March 2010, on the day that would have marked Senna's 50th birthday, the football team Corinthians, which Senna supported, played a tape in memory of Senna which was also part of the theme played at the São Paulo Motor Show.

On 25 July 2010, the BBC motoring show, Top Gear paid an emotional tribute to Senna with British Formula One World Champion, Lewis Hamilton driving Senna's original MP4/4, with which he won the 1988 title. This was prior to the release of the BAFTA Award winning documentary named after him, Senna, directed by Asif Kapadia. In this documentary broadcast only once by the BBC, Senna is named the number one driver ever, by fellow racing drivers. A StudioCanal, Working Title Films, and Midfield Films documentary production, Senna was released to critical acclaim.


The following year, the rivalry between Senna and Prost intensified into numerous battles on the track and a psychological war off it. Some controversy also arose after the French GP press conference when Ron Dennis declared that they found consistent differences between the Honda engines from Prost and Senna in the detriment of Prost. Tension and mistrust between the two drivers increased when Senna overtook Prost at the restart of the San Marino Grand Prix, a move which Prost claimed violated a pre-race agreement (Senna denied the existence of any agreement, though Prost's story was backed up by John Hogan of the team's major sponsor, Marlboro). A discussion between the two drivers and Dennis during a test session at the Pembrey circuit in Wales effectively confirmed to Dennis and the team of Senna and Prost's personal animosity. Senna took an early lead in the championship with victories in San Marino, Monaco, and Mexico. Senna also achieved the feat of leading every lap of those races which was not equalled until Sebastian Vettel in 2012. Senna also managed to win in Germany, Belgium, and Spain. However, unreliability in four consecutive races in Phoenix, Canada, France and Britain, and further unreliability in Italy, together with collisions in Brazil and Portugal, swung the title in Prost's favour.


In July 2013, Honda released a video of an audio-visual tribute on the Suzuka circuit in the dark, titled "Sound of Honda – Ayrton Senna 1989". Using the telemetry and sound of the Honda-powered McLaren MP4/5 driven by the Brazilian driver, Honda recreated the then lap record lap of 1:38.041 minutes by positioning speakers and lights along the 5.8 km track and activating them in synchronization with the race car's position during that lap. In May of that year, Honda also reconfirmed its return to the sport as McLaren's engine supplier from 2015, with both companies again leveraging on Senna's legend as part of their advertising campaign since.

On 25 October 2013, a holiday PlayStation 3 bundle with Gran Turismo 6 was announced which is dedicated to his memory, with some of the proceeds of this bundle going to help the IAS. This was not the first time that Senna was immortalized in a video game since, in 1992, Sega developed and published Ayrton Senna's Super Monaco GP II for the Sega Mega Drive, Master System and Game Gear. Apart from featuring advice from Senna himself, the tracks included Senna's own farm circuit in Tatuí, São Paulo and it was based on the 1991 F1 World Championship (albeit with fictitious rival drivers and teams due to licensing restrictions). This was then followed by the Japan-exclusive Ayrton Senna Personal Talk: Message for the Future for the Sega Saturn, which was a multimedia compact disc containing interviews with Senna overlaid with still images.


On 27 April 2014, as part of commemorating Senna on the 20th anniversary of his death, a three-journalist panel composed of Murray Walker, Maurice Hamilton, and David Tremayne and interviewed by Sky Sports' Simon Lazenby, concurred that, at his final F1 Grand Prix race, Senna was undergoing psychological turmoil in various parts of his life due to:

Since Senna's death, every Williams F1 car has incorporated a small Senna 'S' logo in its Formula 1 car to honour their former driver and in support of the IAS. A revised logo was featured in 2014 for the 20th anniversary of Senna's death.

In March 2014, during the Brazilian Carnival celebrations, the samba group Unidos da Tijuca paid tribute to Senna in one of their parades in Rio de Janeiro. The group showcased his McLaren car along with other characters associated with speed, such as Sonic, The Flash, and Usain Bolt. The school won the coveted trophy for the best parade of 2014.

On 21 March 2014, Google had a special Doodle to honour Senna's 54th birthday that day.

In occasion of the 20th anniversary of Senna's death, on 29 April 2014, in partnership with the IAS, the Brazilian regional airline Azul Linhas Aereas paid tribute by baptizing its Embraer ERJ-195 (registration no. PR-AYU (cn 19000434)) with a new name and livery. The airplane, which was formerly called "Azultec", has been renamed "#sennasempre" ("Senna always") and features the IAS logo on the rear side of the fuselage and the graphics of Senna's F1 helmet at the front, making it appear as though it is wearing the iconic helmet.

Tributes were also made at the Imola circuit to mark the 20th anniversary of Senna's death. On 1 May 2014, thousands of fans from around the world gathered at the Tamburello corner, at the exact scene where Senna suffered his fatal crash 20 years earlier, to hold a minute's silence. Various current and former F1 drivers were in attendance, including: Ferrari drivers Fernando Alonso and Kimi Räikkönen; Ferrari Driver Academy member Jules Bianchi; Senna's close friend and McLaren teammate, Gerhard Berger; and the Italians Jarno Trulli, Ivan Capelli, Pierluigi Martini, Andrea de Cesaris, and Emanuele Pirro. Flowers and other cherishable items were also placed around the statue of Senna, situated directly adjacent to the Tamburello corner.

In May and July 2014, the Republic of San Marino issued 70,008 commemorative EUR 2,50 stamps as well as 8,000 silver proof coins in Eur 5,00 denomination. In December 2014, a French company also produced 520 commemorative coins designed by a Brazilian artist. The American firm Rosland Capital collaborated with the Ayrton Senna Institute to produce a commemorative coin collection in 2017.

In November 2014 British artist Ian Berry unveiled a portrait of Ayrton in São Paulo at the Institut Ayrton Senna to the press and the family of Ayrton Senna. The artist famed for his artwork using only jeans presented the piece, that also included the jeans of the Senna family to great acclaim. The piece traveled around the world for many fans to see and commemorated the 20th anniversary of his passing.


In February 2015, international footballer Alessandro Del Piero inaugurated the "AYRTON" exhibition held in Turin until May 2015 at ADPlog. It was a tribute to Senna curated by, and with tickets proceeds going to, the IAS. There were exhibits of his cars, go carts and helmets as well as the Ian Berry denim portrait.

In July 2015, an update to Angry Birds Go! added Ayrton Senna as a playable driver.

In 2015, when Lewis Hamilton matched Ayrton's three titles, the Senna family gave him an edition of the Ian Berry portrait made out of the family's jeans, Viviane Senna presented it to him at the São Paulo GP.


On 10 June 2017, after qualifying on pole for the Canadian Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton was presented with a Senna helmet that had been worn by Senna during a race. It was given by Senna's family in recognition of Hamilton's 65th pole position, matching Senna's tally.

On 9 December 2017, McLaren unveiled the McLaren Senna, a 789 bhp track-focused sports car, named after Senna.


On 1 October 2018 Nike and Corinthians in partnership with the Ayrton Senna Institute unveil a never-before-seen collection insider by the Lotus team's colour scheme honouring Ayrton Senna, including the team's new third kit. The collection #LuteAtéSerEterno [fight until you're eternal] is a tribute to the 30th anniversary of the driver's first world title, which he won at Suzuka, in Japan. A half-Austrian, half-Brazilian flag was presented on the top step of the podium by the race winner of the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix in honour of Ratzenberger and Senna.


For the 2020 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola, Pierre Gasly wore a special helmet with Senna's colours and the Senna Sempre badging on top.

Family Life

Ayrton married Lilian de Vasconcellos Sousa in February 1981 and they divorced in October of that year.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Ayrton Senna is 63 years, 0 months and 7 days old. Ayrton Senna will celebrate 64th birthday on a Thursday 21st of March 2024. Below we countdown to Ayrton Senna upcoming birthday.


Recent Birthday Highlights

55th birthday - Saturday, March 21, 2015

On his 55th birthday, relive some of Ayrton Senna's greatest moments (VIDEOS) - MotorSportsTalk | NBC Sports

A three-time F1 world champion, Senna is widely regarded as one of the all-time greats of motorsport.

Ayrton Senna 55th birthday timeline

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