Formula One officially returns this weekend with the pre-season tests in Bracelona. Once again, the main category in worldwide motor sports will not feature a Brazilian driver on the starting grid, but two young men seem to have bright futures ahead of them: Sérgio Sette Câmara and Pietro Fittipaldi.
In 2019, Sette Câmara will keep racing in Formula 2, but he was hired to be a part of the development division at McLaren, the team with which Senna became a three-time champion (1988, 1990, 1991). The driver was interviewed on Senna TV soon after being announced as a test driver by the British team.
“Ayrton is my greatest idol. He brought a lot of things to the sport, he was a pioneer. He showed that it’s not enough for a driver to just sit down and drive – he has to be an athlete, he has to know how to speak. Besides, he was a great driver, maybe the best ever. A really special talent. He embodied determination, dedication, not being afraid of innovating. So, I hope to do something similar. Not that I want to be compared to him, but I do want to think outside the box, to be different”, said Sette Câmara on Senna TV.
The McLaren driver has also remarked on Senna’s patriotism, who used to wave the Brazilian flag after his wins. “That’s something Ayrton is remembered for, and I really admire him for it – the fact that he waved the flag, wanting to represent Brazil and show the word he was Brazilian. If I had the chance to do that, I would. Ayrton gave this message to young drivers and I, for one, understood it”, concluded Câmara.
Emerson Fittipaldi’s grandson, Pietro, is the new Haas test driver for the 2019 season, and he will be doing several tests in simulators throughout the year, besides attending some free practice sessions. The driver also revealed a deep admiration for Senna, especially thanks to the stories told by his grandfather.
“I grew up listening to my grandpa’s stories about Ayrton, and both of them were my idols. I’ve raced in several categories in motor sports, but my dream was always to get to F1, and Senna was one of my greatest inspirations”, reveals Pietro, who won the 2017 World Series.
The Haas driver also mentioned the most famous story involving Emerson and Ayrton. In December 1992, Fittipaldi invited Senna to test a race car from Penske, one of the main Indycar teams.
“They were great friends. My grandfather is always talking about the time he invited Ayrton to test his Indycar. My grandfather took a few laps to check if the car was okay. As soon as Ayrton got into the car and took a few laps, he started going really fast and posting great times. He was amazing, and that left a mark on my grandfather”, says Pietro, who is part of the Haas roster alongside Romain Grosjean e Kevin Magnussen.