An age old question

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Who is the Greatest F1 driver of all time?

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Total Votes : 6

An age old question

Post  Adam Thrussell on Wed Nov 17, 2010 3:32 am

Who do you consider to be the Formula 1 driver of the world championship era?

Juan Manuel Fangio (1950s): Winner of 5 world championships, even by driving for two different teams (Maserati and Mercedes) in 1954. Also won titles for Alfa Romeo and Ferrari. His performance was always the greatest of his era, even when pitched against Stirling Moss in similar machinery. Winning 5 championships in an 8 year career is a mighty feat.

Jim Clark (1960s): An exciting, skillful driver that found a winning combination with Colin Chapman's Lotus. In some seasons, he won every race that he finished, and his run of dominance, comparable to that of the Schumacher/Ferrari era, was tragically cut short when he crashed fatally at a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim.

Jackie Stewart (1960s-70s): Famous for his crusades for improved safety, Jackie still find time to blitz the competition and win 3 world championships, taking a new record for most race wins before he was later topped by Alain Prost. Not to mention going on to run his own Formula One team in the 1990's.

Niki Lauda (1970s-80s): Like Schumacher, led an ailing Ferrari team to their first drivers' title in too long. However, due to the radically changing rules during this era, the Lauda-Ferrari combination were unable to match the longevity of the German's success. However, Niki Lauda holds the unique record of coming out of retirement to win his 3rd world title, a feat one former champion has been hankering after this season!

Alain Prost (1980s-90s): The first driver to surpass 3 titles since Fangio, Prost took the unique approach of setting up his car so precisely that he could still win by driving at 90% speed. Until he was usurped by Senna at McLaren he won 3 titles for Ron Dennis' squad before taking a sabbatical in 1992, and duly winning the championship for Williams again in 1993.

Ayrton Senna (1980s-90s): Needs no introduction. Senna was defined by his deep religious beliefs, winning 3 world championships in 4 years before crashing fatally at Imola in 1994, the darkest day for motor racing in years.

Michael Schumacher (1990s-): Was touted as a huge talent the moment he qualified 7th on his debut. An expert at building a team around him, yielding a record 7 world titles and 91 wins, and counting! However, his career has been tarnished by his tendency to crack under the huge pressure of title deciders, crashing deliberately into Hill and Villeneuve on seperate occasions in his desperation to win.

Some statistics for your consideration:
Wins & Win Rate:
Michael Schumacher: 91 wins (34%)
Alain Prost: 51 wins (25%)
Ayrton Senna: 41 wins (25%)
Nigel Mansell: 31 wins (16%)
Jackie Stewart: 27 wins (27%)
Fernando Alonso: 26 wins (16%)
Jim Clark: 25 wins (34%)
Niki Lauda: 25 wins (14%)
Juan Manuel Fangio: 24 wins (46%)
Nelson Piquet: 23 wins (11%)

Poles and Pole Rate:
Michael Schumacher: 68 poles (25%)
Ayrton Senna: 65 poles (40%)
Jim Clark: 33 poles (45%)
Alain Prost: 33 poles (13%)
Nigel Mansell: 32 poles (17%)
Juan Manuel Fangio: 29 poles (56%)
Mika Hakkinen: 26 poles (16%)
Niki Lauda: 24 poles (14%)
Nelson Piquet: 24 poles (12%)

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Re: An age old question

Post  Ashley Rushworth on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:16 pm

See, that's tricky... for many reasons. I bet that the cars back in the 70s or so were MUCH harder to drive, there for it would take more skill to drive. So an older driver could be the best. On statics, Michael is the best, by wins and championships. But there is also Ayrton Senna, who could of been the best but sadly dies so we can't tell... so it's a really tricky one. Good question though Razz
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