My tribute to Ayrton Senna

I had the privilege and the pleasure to work closely to Ayrton for over 4 years and to have known him for another 7 years. So much has been said and published about him it is impossible to be original and very difficult to be creative. So I’d like to mark his birthday  by publishing a few of his best quotes to the public and a few things he said to me in private.

Today he would have turned 54. Sometimes I still think I will bump into him somewhere: at the Berkeley’s Hotel, where he used to stay when in London; at Wimbledon, where we bumped into each other in 1987; in the kIngs Road when he brought his last girlfriend Adriane Galisteu. I will be posting these stories separately from today until 1st May.

Ayrton giving an interview, I am near him

Here are my chosen quotes. Of course, I  have no intention of completely define Ayrton in these sentences. But I hope they will make you see him through my eyes: A Brazilian sports loving woman but not particularly fond of car racing.

Most unforgettable thing he said to me: “It can’t get any worse, Betise”, when leaving the Aida circuit, Japan after I said to him I hoped the European season would change things around. He had been bumped off the race by Mika Hakkinen and , therefore, remained in 0 points against 20 of Michael Schumacher. After that it was Imola.

The one I most agree with : “I have no idols. I admire work, dedication and competence”. Pure Ayrton.

Racing quote  I most admire: “I race to win. You do something very well or not at all”. Simple as that.

Racing quote I best understand : “Winning is the only justifiable reason to risk your life in such absurd circumstances” .

Common sense: “I resist to bad moments  as well as I can. The good ones I just lay back and enjoy”. it sounds simple but you should have seen his face and tone of voice saying that. Ayrton took nothing lightly.

About his privacy: “A way to preserve your image is not to let people invade your home. It is a way I have found to keep my personal values” . (only his very close friends and family were allowed in his many properties.

About Death: I don’t fear death. One day it will come. It is the only certainty in life”.

One of the most brilliant,  about Mansell: “Nigel is the only driver you can see on both rearview mirrors”. Has anyone forgotten Monaco1992?

His perfect lap: “it is always still to come. It is like tying both ends of your tie so that they are exactly the same length. Experience tells you that you can do it; practice tells you that you can do it. But you just can’t”.

Best quote about Ayrton: “Sometimes I think God himself drives through Ayrton, much as I fell God wrote music through Mozart”, Peter Dick in an article entitled “Why we dislike Senna”.

His motivation: “Sometimes I try to beat other people achievements but most of the time I find it much better to beat my own achievements”

The perfect woman, once he said to me: “She has to be sensual, fascinating, intelligent, beautiful, lively and assured of herself”. I laughed and replied. “Knowing you, I nearly believe you are going to find her.”

About Betise Assumpcao Head

Communicator, specialized in Media Relations, Reputation, Crisis Management, corporate or individual. I started as a Sports Journalist (7 years, Mains newspapers and magazines in Brazil) turned into World Wide Press Officer (Senna 1990/1994), been to Games in Barcelona Atlanta, London & Rio 2016. Italy, Germany & Brazilian World Cups.

8 responses to “My tribute to Ayrton Senna”

  1. jeromeg6 says :

    Reblogged this on Jerome's World and commented:
    I really enjoyed this 🙂


  2. marthasimoes says :

    Great quotes. It’s good to dig in to learn why was he so successful. He will never be forgotten.


  3. carlos matias says :

    Perfeito …


  4. Berenice malzone says :

    Loves the choices


  5. Nick Warner says :

    “I have no idols. I admire work, dedication and competence”…………although I seem to remember hearing this one before, it’s classic Ayrton! It’s not a bad value for anyone to live by is it?


  6. dale says :

    thankyou for taking us on an inside view!!!


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