Ayrton Senna: Why, 25 years on, Brazilian’s spirit & memory lives on as strong as ever

(Photo by Instagram)

A year and eight days before the accident that cost him his life, on a warm and sunny spring morning, Ayrton Senna was surrounded by journalists in the paddock at Imola.

Five minutes or so after stepping out of his McLaren after first practice for the 1993 San Marino Grand Prix, the Brazilian was holding court, explaining his late arrival in Italy, just that morning, on an overnight flight from his home in Sao Paulo.

Senna, red overalls off his shoulders and tied around his waist, was encircled. The questions kept coming and, as time passed, one, young, wet-behind-the-ears journalist, attending his first grand prix in a professional capacity, was learning the hard way

one of the perils of a media scrum.Standing behind Senna, holding a dictaphone at full stretch over the driver’s shoulder, the reporter’s arm began to grow tired and ache.

What to do? Too hemmed in to swap arms, he couldn’t remove it, or the interview would be lost. But the discomfort kept growing. Eventually, he made a decision.