Journal: Who Is Your Favorite Racing Driver?

Who Is Your Favorite Racing Driver?

By Petrolicious Productions
February 15, 2013
32 comments

On the left, we’ve posted a vintage Pirelli commercial that we came across the other day, and which features race car driver Juan Manual Fangio, who’s a favorite of ours. We also love the overall style of this commercial: the car, the music, and the way the excitement builds during the video.

Another favorite in the Petrolicious office is Ayrton Senna. He was such a nice, charismatic guy, and we absolutely loved the documentary about his life and career, Senna. (Hopefully you’ve all seen it already, because it’s one of the best documentaries ever, in our opinion.)

– – –

Now we’d love to hear from you.

Who is your favorite racing driver?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzOB1hR6mHc

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Bells
Bells
4 years ago

Pedro Rodriguez . . . No fear.

Carlos Rincon Eckardt
Carlos Rincon Eckardt
7 years ago

I grew up on the exploits of Ayrton Senna, he was fearless, charismatic and determined to win. Suzuka 1988 was his coronation as one of the greatest.

e-the-red
e-the-red
7 years ago

John Surtees. Won both F1 and Moto GP championships. In the Moto GP days IOM was part of the GP circus.

Joey
Joey
7 years ago

Jim Clark. Essentially what RS Anthony said.

Evan Bedford
Evan Bedford
7 years ago

Joey Dunlop: humanitarian and slightly crazy Isle of Man champion. Sadly died on the track.

A Dias
A Dias
7 years ago

Jim Clark.

plume19
plume19
7 years ago

There is an excellent video on Sir Stirling Moss, what a man and what a career!
Regarding Prost / Senna, I would be more on Prost side, can’t forget the absence of steering wheel input in Japan final round ;°)

These guys are fascinating but I also would like to mention Robert Benoit. He was a hero behind the steering wheel, and during the war. This guy sadly die in Buchenwald under Nazi torture. There is fascinating story about his escape from occupied zone to free zone in the South of France. He was reaching south with his personal Bugatti Type 57 SC Atalante (straight 8 – 200 bph grand prix engine) when he ran low on fuel. He got caught by a German patrol, and the German officer decided that this Bugatti would fit him perfectly (He also recognized the GP driver, with the respect of driver’s career). After “gentleman” discussion, the Atalante’s tank was filled-up and they commonly agreed that Benoist would follow the convey, otherwise he would suffer heavy fire. In an intersection, Benoit escaped and pushed his touring car as he was used to do on hit Type 35. Of course nobody could catch him and he reached the free zone without any bullet impact. Alter this episode, he came back to Auffargis, near Paris, to organize a French resistance team and was captured, tortured and deported. This man is remembered by very few people, I won’t forget him.
As a driver, he mainly raced for Delage & Bugatti. (There is another story about his meeting with Louis Delâge during the war period… but this is another story!)
I remenber a magnificent radio episode on this man few years ago (in french only), so well made.

flooglemop
flooglemop
7 years ago

Speed Racer

Greg J. Bennett
Greg J. Bennett
7 years ago

Duncan Hamilton … closely followed by Jaun Manuel Fangio.

Ron Ogle
Ron Ogle
7 years ago

Gilles. One word is enough.

RS Anthony
RS Anthony
10 years ago

Tough question.
If I have to name a F1 driver of the sixties, I’d easily and obviously say Jim Clark. Pure talent. Humble. Down-to-earth. Never displayed a propensity to push fellow racers off track / punch them in the face / forget a corner is not a straight line. In other words, good manners. Prost comes close, though from a much different era, and a bit too big an appetite for politics.

F1 in the seventies I don’t know that well. But Mario Andretti’s story kind of moves me.

Aside from F1, I can’t help but think of Sebastien Loeb. Should I really explain why? 🙂

Sanjit Deepalam
Sanjit Deepalam
10 years ago

Ayrton Senna was an absolute god. I first came across him a couple years ago while I was scrolling through Netflix. I watched the movie Senna, and I was absolutely captivated. He died four years before I was born, but I’m sure that if he raced today, he’d take Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton, and Kimi Raikkonen all to school. And he was brilliant off the track as well. He has unequaled talent, unequaled ability, and unequaled class.

Bradley Price
Bradley Price
10 years ago

I’m always torn between the balls-out “genius” drivers (Nuvolari, Villeneuve, Clark) vs. the cool head, thinking drivers (Stewart, Fangio, Prost). In the end, it is impossible to pick a favorite.

Arthur Skinner
Arthur Skinner
10 years ago

That was a very nice ad. Filmed at the old Monza banking with one of my favorite cars. Although I didn’t know they made convertible GTV’s. It is hard to name one favorite driver. I think you have to restrict them to their individual decades. Was Fangio better than Nuvolari? Was he better that Rosemyer? Given equivalent machinery would he have bettered Stirling Moss, Jim Clark or John Surtees or Senna? We will never know.

matteo novello
matteo novello
10 years ago

ayrton..without a doubt…no eletronics…10 cilinders, a steering wheel an insane feeling for speed

Afshin Behnia
Afshin Behnia
10 years ago
Reply to  matteo novello

Not to mention fantastic sportsmanship and attitude.

Daniel Garberding
Daniel Garberding
10 years ago

Paul Newman, he may not compare to the others mentioned when it comes to skill, however he will always be a favourite.

Clive Bremner
Clive Bremner
10 years ago

Through its history Motor Racing has forged legendary drivers like gold ingots. One who shines out like a beacon is Tazio Nuvolari.
This superhuman braved the 1935 Nurburgring in his old Alfa and showed the 3rd Reich how it was done. Google him.

Koen De Groot
Koen De Groot
10 years ago

Tazio Nuvolari & Nicola Larini in different eras getting in the (Nurburg)ring beating german power. Both outstanding performances and outstanding drivers…

Jonathon Glazebrook
Jonathon Glazebrook
10 years ago

I get the euro-centric vibe, but growing up in the south I cut my teeth on Nascar; the guy I would list as one of my favorites is Dale Earnhardt. The “Intimidator” was was one of the last of the old guard and absolutely viscous on track, but despite the rough edges, he was a great to his fans and a real character away from the circuit. I loved watching him race and seeing him with Jr. at the Rolex 24 in Daytona was really something special.

Zsolt Szabo
Zsolt Szabo
10 years ago

If we talking about rally Colin McRae & Richard Burns.

Thomas Falkiner
Thomas Falkiner
10 years ago

I used to love Senna the most. But the older I get the more I seem to side with Alain Prost. The thinking driver’s choice.

Chris B
Chris B
10 years ago

Hey all, being Australian I would have to say Peter Brock or Peter Perfect as we called him, a absolute legend in Australia racing in touring cars or V8 super cars as they call it now, U tube it if you have not seen it , its the premier class in this country, sadly he was killed in a Targa avent a few years ago. Now I follow Craig Lowndes in the V8 super car series , he is all class. 🙂

Andre C  Hulstaert
Andre C Hulstaert
10 years ago

Stirling Moss, a great driver and gentleman

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay
10 years ago

This is a big question.
When I was young and he was still racing, it was my father.
When I was a bit older, it was the drivers who I watched up close on the track that truly stood out, head and shoulders above the rest, banging wheels in the cars I wanted to drive when I came of age: Klaus Ludwig, Jan Lammers, Martin Brundle, Jackie Ickx, Stefan Bellof, James Weaver, Didier Theys. There are many others, of course.
Now, it is my son (age 7).

Afshin Behnia
Afshin Behnia
10 years ago

Well said! Made me feel fuzzy.

Terrence Dorsey
Terrence Dorsey
10 years ago

PL Newman and Sebastien Loeb.

In the eternal Senna/Prost debate, I fall on the side of the Professor.

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay
10 years ago

A long time ago at the races, a van pulled up next to my father’s car in the parking lot paddock. A boom swung out from the van and the small team promptly began an engine swap in a 240Z. In those days, this was considered pretty fancy stuff for trackside. The name on the side of the car: PL Newman. Old school.

Terrence Dorsey
Terrence Dorsey
10 years ago

Great story.

I was fortunate enough to meet the man, briefly, not long before his passing. At the track no less. He was unable to drive that day, but spent the morning, smiling like a kid, watching us go ’round. He did many great things in his life, but that memory dominates all.

Frazer Spowart
Frazer Spowart
10 years ago

Senna, without a doubt will always be one of the greatest! Since I’m Scottish, I’m also going to say Jackie Stewart the “Flying Scot”, also a legend in the racing world!

Matthew Lange
Matthew Lange
10 years ago

For me the greatest ever was Gilles Villeneuve. Never had a car equal to his talents, fiercely competive but always honourable on the track. In one wet qualifying session at Watkins Glen he was 11 seconds faster than any other driver!

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay
10 years ago
Reply to  Matthew Lange

As a young teen, I had two large framed pieces on my bedroom wall. One was a painting of my father’s car done by a friend and fellow racer. The other was a huge photograph of Gilles in full opposite lock in the 312T4.