Top 25 Formula 1 drivers of all-time

Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Formula 1 (Photo by Paul-Henri Cahier/Getty Images)
Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Formula 1 (Photo by Paul-Henri Cahier/Getty Images) /
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Ayrton Senna, Formula 1
Ayrton Senna, Formula 1 – Mandatory Credit: Pascal Rondeau/Allsport /

Top Formula 1 drivers of all-time: #2 – Ayrton Senna

If there was ever a case of a driver’s career being cut too short due to a fatal crash, the name attached to that case is Ayrton Senna, who lost his life while leading the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix at Imola (Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari) in what was only his third race driving for Williams after leaving McLaren.

Senna saw the bulk of his success come with McLaren, when he won three world championships in a four-year span from 1988 to 1991.

His life ended with 41 career victories, which still ranks fifth on the all-time wins list, and if not for that fateful May day in 1994, that total would likely be far greater, likely at least good enough for third (53).

In fact, many believe Senna is the greatest driver not only in Formula 1 history but in the history of motorsport. While you could certainly make a case for others, it’s hard to make a surefire case against him.

When it came to getting everything out of the race car — raw speed — nobody was better than the three-time world champion, who took 65 pole positions for 162 races, including one for the race that ultimately saw his fatal crash.

And when it came to racing in the rain, you could pretty much consider the event over before it started. Senna was going to win, hands down, and there was nothing that anybody could do about it, as evidenced many, many times. This includes his success in the Monaco Grand Prix, where he is still the only six-time winner.