Ayrton Senna voted Champion of Champions by F1 Fanatic readers

Champion of Champions

Ayrton Senna, McLaren, Spa-Francorchamps, 1991

Ayrton Senna, McLaren, Spa-Francorchamps, 1991

Ayrton Senna has been voted the all-time Formula 1 Champion of Champions in a poll of F1 Fanatic readers.

The six-week-long series debating the greatest champions of all time saw over 20,000 votes cast and 4,603 comments posted.

Senna was picked over Michael Schumacher in the final round of the elimination tournament with 57% of the vote.

Given the differences between the drivers, the cars they had and the eras they drove in, finding a winner that a large majority agreed with was always likely to be impossible.

It would be too easy, and rather simplistic, to say that the choice of Senna was entirely down to his charismatic appeal and the untimeliness of his death.

Senna exploited the opportunities that were presented to him. In Formula 1 you will never win a world championship without a car that’s good enough to deliver it.

He had such a car from 1988-1991. In that four-year period he won three world championships, and lost the other because his principal rival drove into him.

The rest of the time he punched far above the weight of whatever he was driving.

In his first season he nearly won a race in a Toleman and in his final full year he won five races up against the devastating Williams-Renault FW15Cs.

Aside from his exceptional record – particularly his astonishing tally of pole positions – a recurring point in the discussions about Senna was the darker side of his talent. Particularly the crash with Alain Prost at Suzuka in 1990 that sealed his second title.

That cynical and dangerous act cannot be glossed over. But nor can we ignore that two of the other most highly-rated champions – Schumacher and Prost – won titles in similar circumstances.

We cannot say whether the races Senna never drove would have enhanced or diminished his reputation as a driver.

Judged solely on his record: for his strangle hold on pole position, for his wet weather genius, for his overtaking prowess, for taking on and beating a multiple champion in ‘his team’, and for the races and titles he won against top-drawer rivals, Ayrton Senna is a satisfying choice as Champion of Champions.

But he ‘greatest champion of all time’ argument is one that’s impossible to resolve. Hopefully this series has provided an entertaining and original angle on it, once which you enjoyed participating in.

See the Champion of Champions in stats to compare how all 32 F1 champions stack up.

Here’s a full breakdown of who won each round of Champion of Champions:

Champion of Champions - complete voting record

Champion of Champions - complete voting record

Thanks to Emory McGinnis for producing the Champion of Champions table.

Champion of Champions

Browse all Champion of Champions articles

Images ?? Honda

Advert | Go Ad-free

190 comments on Ayrton Senna voted Champion of Champions by F1 Fanatic readers

1 3 4 5
  1. All F1 drivers voted Senna
    80% of todays drivers voted Senna
    Journalists voted Senna
    Engineers voted Senna
    10.000 Autosport readers voted Senna
    F1 fanatic readers voted Senna

    and all these despite the fact that 90% of Senna fans do not use internet let alone blogs because of their age.

    you dont have to admit it but he is the GREATEST.

  2. Ayrton Senna:
    -Years in F1: 10 (+ 3 races in 1994)
    -Victories: 41
    -Poles: 65
    -Championships: 1988, 1990-1991.
    -Teams: Toleman (Worst), Lotus (Medium), Mclaren (High), Willians(High).

    Michael Schumacher
    -Years in F1: 16
    -Victories: 91 (The most in 2000 decade)
    -Poles: 68 (3 more than Senna in 16 years!!)
    -Championships: 1994-1995, 2000-2004
    -Teams: Benneton (High), Ferrari(…No coments)

    Now who’s the Best???

1 3 4 5

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments must abide by the comment policy. Comments may be moderated.
Want to post off-topic? Head to the forum.
See the FAQ for more information.