of three-time Formula One
World Champion Ayrton Senna
on May 1, 1994, occurred as a result of his car crashing into a concrete barrier while he was leading the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix
at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari
in Italy. The previous day, Roland Ratzenberger
had been killed when his car crashed during qualification for the race. His and Senna's accidents were the worst of several accidents that took place that weekend and were the first fatal accidents
to occur during a Formula One race meeting in twelve years. They became a turning point in the safety of Formula One, prompting the implementation of new safety measures and the re-formation of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association
While Senna's crash remains the most recent to claim the life of a Formula 1 driver, two accidents have since claimed the lives of trackside marshals.
On May 1, 1994, Senna took part in his third race for the Williams
team, the San Marino Grand Prix
at the Imola circuit
. Although he would not finish it, Senna started his final Formula One race from pole position.
That weekend, he was particularly upset by two events. On Friday, during the afternoon qualifying session, Senna's protégé
, F1 newcomer Rubens Barrichello
, was involved in a serious accident that prevented him from competing in the race. On Saturday, the death of Austrian driver Roland Ratzenberger
in qualifying deeply upset Senna, reinforcing his safety concerns and made him consider retiring from the... Read More