Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso fascinatingly in contrast by F1 chief technical officer | F1

Pat Symonds, the F1 chief technical officer, was the lead engineer at Toleman when Senna debuted. He was Schumacher’s race engineer within the title-winning 1994 season at Benetton. And he labored with Alonso who gained the 2005 and 2006 titles with Renault.

The early genius of Senna

“It was within the days earlier than we had actually any knowledge acquisition, we had been simply constructing our first knowledge acquisition units,” Symonds mentioned of the Brazilian’s early days in F1.

“So we had been counting on the motive force an terrible lot, even all the way down to what revs he was pulling on the finish of the straight, have we received the suitable prime gear in, what’s the water and oil temperature, have we received the radiators blanked appropriately, issues like that.

“In addition to driving the automobile quick, in addition to being tactical, we had been having to consider all this stuff. 

Schumacher’s uniqueness

“Michael, for instance, he favored a really unstable automobile,” Symonds mentioned. “It could make the automobile very fast, however you might want to be a rattling good driver to drive this. 

“We used to set his automobile up in fairly an unstable method, and his teammates typically struggled with that, due to the way in which it was.

“So making an attempt to charge a driver – who’s fast and why are they fast – is admittedly tough whenever you’re taking a look at that time frame.”

Alonso on the leading edge

“By the point we get to Fernando, we all know a hell of much more about what’s taking place with the automobile than he does by way of [data]. 

“So then what you’re actually in search of, is you’re in search of the motive force who can interpret the way you flip the automobile dynamics into one thing that the motive force can deal with.”

Shallowness is the important thing trait of an F1 champion

“The factor you’ve received to recollect is that what you needed from a driver was very completely different in these three many years,” Symonds mentioned. 

“A decade in any enterprise is kind of a very long time however, in motorsport, it’s like a century – issues change so, so quickly.

“I feel there are particular traits of the drivers that do carry by and the prime one is having an enormous vanity.

“Each good driver believes that they’re not only a good driver, however one of the best driver. And that’s actually, actually necessary. That’s not one thing that’s simply current in motorsport, that’s one thing in any sport.

“You want that capacity to not have to consider when to press the brake, when to show the steering wheel, when to open the throttle.

“It must be pure inside you, and also you then have to have the intelligence to know whenever you received it proper and whenever you received it flawed. That’s what makes you fast, then you definately add all the opposite issues that make you an entire racing driver – the additional intelligence to know the tactical scenario, the health, all these types of issues.

“The intelligent drivers are those who type of take into consideration every a part of the circuit and focus on it, then they put all of it collectively, and then you definately get the short lap.

“These guys are so good, they’ll do 5 to 10 laps and that’s most likely as fast as they will go.

“Not as a result of they fight more durable and go slower. There are some who overdrive and, most likely in System 1 you see that as a result of your largest competitor is your teammate. Everybody is aware of that.

“While you’ve received a very good teammate, like these three that we’ve talked about, then their teammates are all the time taking a look at what they’re doing. They’re making an attempt to go sooner and you’ll attempt too onerous, after which go slower, since you do have to be clean driving in System 1.”

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