Ayrton Senna was one of the greatest drivers in history, but when talking about his accomplishments and career, many often compare him to his greatest rival, Alain Prost. Although they were different types of drivers, they both had amazing skills on the track.
The history of their rivalry is long and detailed. They met each other often on the tracks, with varying successes. In 1983, Senna nabbed the Formula-3 title in the UK with 13 wins out of 21 races, and he got the chance to negotiate a contract with an F1 top ranked team. He did his debut as a F1 driver in 1984 in Brazil, his home country. His debut race didn’t go well, as he had trouble with his turbo engine all season. Prost, on the other hand, had the TAG Porche engine, so he won the race.
In the late 80s and early 90s, Formula One was at its peak with amazing races and genius drivers, and both Senna and Prost found themselves on this list. During this period, their rivalry was considered to be one of the most thrilling and dangerous ones ever seen in any sport. They both drove F1 for McLaren for a couple of seasons, but their hostile relationship lasted even after one of them left the team. Alain Prost had earned himself the nickname “Le Professeur”- the professor, because of his smooth driving skills, while Senna was on his way to become a ruthless and intense driver.
Both of these men wanted to prove themselves as the best driver in the history of F1 and their relationship suffered because of it. Their relationship came to a peak when Prost accused Senna of intentionally trying to cause an accident on the tracks. He was afraid the Brazilian would kill someone while doing his dangerous racing.
The final act of this rivalry came in 1994, at the Gran Prix in San Marino, when Senna was killed. Although they were intense rivals, it seems that both men respected each other’s skills and had an inspiring, although unusual friendhip.