The impact that Ayrton had outside of F1 as well as within was phenomenal. I don’t think there’s been any other driver since who’s gathered the spirit of millions quite like he did, so I don’t see any other ones getting a Doodle for now.
A nice tribute there and a happy birthday to my childhood hero- to think I was 17 and still at school when he died!!
I think that to say Ayrton had a huge impact outside F1 just because he died young (as some say) gives him a huge disrespect and disservice. He was very much a contradiction in many ways, very religious as many Brazilians are, such a huge aura around him and a charismatic man, but would then, to quote Martin Bundle, put his car in a position where he would leave it to you to either back out or crash- risking both your lives! White line fever at its best!!
Senna well knew he was born into the right side of Brazilian society, but also while very proud of his country also ashamed in how so many were so poor, and he did have plans to use his fame and money to help that after F1. He did donate quite a fair bit of money before the creation of the Senna Foundation (I think started not long after his death).
I don’t think too many on this site will doubt his achievements in the car but I think he could have done so much more for others after he retired- the F1 version of Bono if you will :)
I think that’s it: worldwide, we know Senna because of his relentless speed and amazing talent. In Brazil, he’s known for his charity work, his pride in his home country, and his compassion for its people. Just watching his funeral in the Senna documentary shows the love that the Brazilian people gave back to him. It’s not just the racing (which was phenomenal) but his compassion.
At least that compassion lives on in the foundation which carries his name.
Another thought: I actually liked that the Google Doodle (Goodle? Doogle?) was on his birthday rather than on the anniversary of his death.
It’s a very personal opinion but I believe that the death of Senna in such a tragic fashion had more of an emotional impact on the fans as well as the world who took notice of this genius. Schumacher, Vettel, Alonso can also be termed as greats but the difference is that they’re all still alive so people are more divided amongst fanatics and haters (a bit impolite but true)