Ayrton Senna arrived on the streets of the Monaco principality with one strategy in mind for racing well on the Monte Carlo circuit:
“Put up a good fight, utilize the strength of the left hand and make no mistakes.”
A good fight because he knew that McLaren’s Porche engines were unbeatable on that circuit. And strength in the left hand because, in Monaco, each driver would change gears more than 3,000 times during the race, and he, left handed, had the advantage of keeping his strongest hand on the wheel. And of course, he could make no mistakes. On a track with no run-off areas, one tiny error could mean an early end of race.
Ayrton Senna went by the book, and drove at full throttle in the qualifying session, where he secured the third time, starting the race in the second row. During the race, he made no mistakes and led for seven laps.
It wasn’t enough to surpass Alain Prost and Keke Rosberg’s McLarens, which came out ahead of their adversaries and made up the first twosome for McLaren that year. Ayrton Senna finished in the points, coming in third. At the end of the race, he found consolation:
“Third place is the maximum I could do in a normal race. So it makes sense.”
E. de Angelis
position in championship following the race
championship points accumulated
Third place is the maximum I could do in a normal race. So it makes sense.