August 26th is a fun date on social networks: it’s Mustache Day. Lots of people take the opportunity to show off their mustaches (both real and fake ones) and pay tribute to famous mustache-wearers. That’s why the official Ayrton Senna website decided to list some of the most memorable duels between the Brazilian driver and Nigel Mansell.
1- Japan 1991
Senna’s third world-title was decided on a mistake by Mansell, who was gunning for the Brazilian driver and was the only one who could take it away from him. Listen to the famous commentary by TV announcer Galvão Bueno: “Mansell went straight ahead! Ayrton Senna, three-time F1 world champion!”
2- Jerez 1986
The 1986 Spanish Grand Prix had one of the closest and most exciting finishes in F1 history. Senna completed the race just 0s014 ahead of Mansell, who had better tires and crossed the finish line literally side by side with the Brazilian, who was winning for the third time in the category.
3- Monaco 1992
Beating the 1992 Williams was almost impossible, but Senna was one of the few who were able to break the winning streak of a car that he described as being “from another planet”. The Brazilian bravely held Mansell off for eight laps. “I knew Nigel was going to do everything in his power to overtake me, and he was quicker everywhere in the circuit, so I just tried stay on the track and on the right spot. On the straight, his car behaved like a dragster, doing burnouts on second, third and fourth gears. And I was able to win”, said Senna after the race.
4- Barcelona 1991
Senna bested Mansell on several occasions, but the Britton also had some of his most memorable wins after heated duels with the Brazilian. One of them took place at the 1991 Spanish Grand Prix, when the Britton and the Brazilian touched wheels, making sparks fly all over the pit-straight. It was one of the classic images that season. This time, the Britton won the race, but not the title. Senna became a champion on the very next race.
5- Detroit 1986
One of the things that made Ayrton rise above the competition was how well he performed on street tracks. In Detroit, that became quite clear. He won three times in a row (1986, 1987 and 1988). On his first win, he overtook Mansell in one of the most beautiful maneuvers in his career, by finding an incredibly narrow gap before hitting the wall. It was his fourth win in F1, and the first time he had a Brazilian flag inside his cockpit.