Ayrton SennaAyrton Senna

If you were an F1 driver and you saw Max Verstappen racing up from the rear, what would you do? Most would be intimidated and offer only a token resistance before letting the juggernaut past.

In 2022 and 2023, Max Verstappen, driving for Red Bull, has consistently outperformed other drivers. He won the championship in 2022 and in 2023 has completely dominated the field.

At the time of writing, he has just set the record for the greatest number of unbroken wins in a season (10). With 364 points to his name after the Monza GP, unless something disastrous happens, his name is already in the 2023 trophy.

In the past there have been other drivers that have been similarly dominant.

  • Michael Schumacher during his tenure with Ferrari
  • Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull
  • Lewis Hamilton while at Mercedes.

However, according to Peter Windsor, a former team manager for Williams and Ferrari, there’s one driver/team combination in history that presented the most risk.

Ayrton Senna was the Most Menacing F1 Driver

Speaking in his own YouTube channel Peter shared his perspective. When he was asked to identify the most intimidating driver/team combination,

Windsor referenced several incidents involving Ayrton Senna. He suggested that Senna’s aggressive driving style made him particularly notable.

“Most menacing?” he pondered, in response.

“Well, I think I’d be most menaced by Ayrton Senna in a dayglo McLaren because you wouldn’t know what he was going to do next.”

Peter Windsor

Explaining his logic, Windsor said:

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“If you think about what he did to Alain Prost a couple of times at Suzuka, once at the chicane and once at Turn 1, what he did to Nigel Mansell a few times, Spa brake testing, what he did to Martin Brundle a number of times in Formula 3… You’d be thinking Ayrton Senna.”

Peter Windsor

See the interview live (LIVE F1 Dutch GP debrief chat with PETER WINDSOR – YouTube)

Windsor also commented on other dominant drivers.

While he acknowledged Hamilton’s skills, particularly during a season with a distinctive black Mercedes, he felt that Hamilton was generally a fair competitor on the track.

Similarly, Verstappen didn’t concern Windsor from a competitive standpoint. Although he remarked that, given Verstappen’s 2023 performance, many might choose to let him pass without challenge.

Conversely, he suggested that both Senna and Schumacher were drivers he’d be cautious around on the track.

“Senna, I would be worried about and Michael, I’d be worried about. Verstappen, I wouldn’t be worried about Verstappen, but if it was 2023 and I wasn’t in a Red Bull, I’d be just waving him past and not worrying about him at all!”

Peter Windsor

By Jonny Noble

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Jonny Noble I’m a dedicated F1 Writer – and I’ve Been One for Over Four Decades, I’ve been intimately immersed in the world of Formula One for more than 44 years. That’s longer than most professional commentators can boast! As an independent writer, I offer a unique perspective on the entire F1 landscape, free from biases that might cloud the discussion. We dive deep into the exhilarating, frustrating, and captivating facets of the F1 universe. So, regardless of my amateur status, one thing is undeniable: four decades of dedicated F1 fandom have forged strong opinions worth exploring!