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UNDERDOG TALES: When Senna took the F1 paddock by storm with Toleman and made Monaco’s streets his own

Staff Writer

Mike Seymour
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Backmarker Corner Senna.jpg

Ayrton Senna needed only a handful of races to show the world that he was an F1 megastar in the making, taking a famous second-place finish – and so nearly a victory – with the plucky Toleman team at the 1984 Monaco Grand Prix amid torrential rain. To kick off a new series highlighting moments in F1 history when drivers and teams punched above their weight, we spoke with his race engineer that season, Pat Symonds, for a trip down memory lane and a fresh take on the beginnings of the Senna legend...

Ayrton Senna was hot property at the end of 1983. He had just beaten Martin Brundle to the British Formula 3 title and won the prestigious Macau Grand Prix, adding to British Formula Ford 2000 and European Formula Ford 2000 titles the year before, and the Formula Ford 1600 title the year before that.

READ MORE: From Hamilton and Villeneuve to Schumacher and Senna – The best rookie seasons in F1 history

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