Ayrton Senna’s victory in the 1983 British Formula 3 Championship finally paved his way to Formula 1. During the 1983 season Senna had tests in four Formula 1 teams – he drove for Williams, McLaren, Toleman and Brabham. His first test with an F1 car was in July in Donington Park where he drove Williams FW08C – the previous year’s champions car. Ayrton broke the track’s record and completed a few laps faster than the team’s main drivers. But there was no place in the team for him as Keke Rosberg and Jacques Lafitte inked into deals for 1984. In October that year Senna tested for McLaren at Silverstone. At that test Senna impressed but Ron Dennis, with Alain Prost and Niki Lauda on his books, could only offer the Brazilian a Formula 2 season. Then followed the test for Toleman, which was ready to give a seat to Senna to race for them without conditions. The final test of the year for Senna was on 14 November 1983, at Paul Ricard circuit in France. Brabham’s boss Bernie Ecclestone assembled Ayrton Senna, Mauro Baldi, Pierluigi Martini and Roberto Guerrero to test a Brabham BT52B BMW. Piquet went out on track first, did a few laps and popped a 1:05.90 around a shortened version of the French Grand Prix venue. Then three young pilots went one after another with Piquet’s setup. The times were:
Nelson Piquet 1:05.90
Mauro Baldi 1:07.80
Ayrton Senna 1:07.90
Roberto Guerrero 1:08.60
But neither of the trio would be chosen to partner Piquet as Brabham opted later for Teo Fabi on the behest of Parmalat, who were the title sponsors and wanted an Italian in the team. The scale model from IXO was issued in “Lendas Brasileiras” collection. See also other versions of BT52 / 52B models: Piquet BT52; Patrese BT52; Piquet BT52B F1AC; Piquet BT52B LB.
|1983||F1||Paul Ricard Tests|
|1:43||IXO||Eaglemoss Lendas Brasileiras do Automobilismo|