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Ayrton Senna Special: Teammates 4: Satoru Nakajima

  • Published on 19 Apr 2019 15:00
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

In 1986, when Satoru Nakajima made his debut for Lotus-Honda in Formula 1, he was the best that Japan had to offer in the field of motorsport. As Honda's factory driver, he won five Formula 2 championships in Japan. In 1981 he won his first championship and he won all his titles with a Honda V6 engine. 

Nakajima had been pushed forward by Honda to replace Nigel Mansell at Williams in 1986. The Japanese manufacturer was the exclusive supplier of the British team. Frank Williams refused to dump Nigel Mansell and after his two victories at Brands Hatch and Kyalami, it was impossible for Honda to make any demands.

Nakajima was put in the waiting room by Honda and in 1986 he was placed in Formula 3000 as factory driver of Ron Tauranac (Ralt). Nakajima also remained active in the Japanese Formula 2 for Heros Racing. Nakajima became champion again and stayed ahead of former Formula 1 driver Kazuyoshi Hoshino. In Formula 3000 he had a nice campaign with seven points out of seven races. Due to his double duty, Nakajima could not participate in European races when he was driving in Japan.

Lotus decided to sign the Japanese driver as a teammate of Ayrton Senna. Despite the fact that Nakajima was defeated by the Brazilian prodigy in every qualifying session, he scored points in four races. According to the current scoring, that would be 51. According to the 1987 scoring, it was seven. 

Qualifying times: 

Grand Prix Ayrton Satoru
     
Brazil 1:29.002 1:34.445
San Marino 1:25.826 1:30.545
Belgium 1:53.426 1:58.649
Monaco 1:23.711 1:28.890
Detroit 1:40.607 1:48.801
France 1:07.024 1:10.652
Great Britain 1:08.181 1:10.619
Germany 1:42.873 1:46.760
Hongarije 1:30.387 1:34.476
Austria 1:25.492 1:28.786
Italy 1:24.907 1:28.160
Portugal 1:18.354 1:22.222
Spain 1:24.320 1:28.367
Mexico 1:19.089 1:22.214
Japan 1:42.783 1:43.685
Australia 1:18.488 1:20.891



Ayrton Senna Special: Part 1 - Ayrton and karting - The early years
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 2 - Ayrton and karting - International

Ayrton Senna Special: Part 3 - Ayrton and karting - The tough trip in Buenos Aires
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 4 - Ayrton and karting - The last race
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 5 - Ayrton in Europe - Formula Ford 1600 and the battle with Rick Morris

Ayrton Senna Special: Part 6 - Ayrton in Europe - A glorious year in Formula Ford 200
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 7 - Ayrton in British Formula 3 - Senna in a class of his own
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 8 - Ayrton in British Formula 3 - First signs of pressure and dirt game 
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 9 - Ayrton in British Formula 3 - Shame at Oulton Park and another title
Ayrton Senna Special Exclusive Interview: Allen Berg: Ayrton drove against the British system
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 10 - Ayrton as a test driver - The first experience in a Formula 1 car
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 11 - Ayrton as a test driver - A selection of different teams
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 12 - Ayrton at Toleman - Why the choice for Toleman was the right one
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 13 - Ayrton at Toleman - Monaco Grand Prix - Stefan was faster
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 14 - Ayrton at Toleman - Monaco Grand Prix - Post-race
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 15 - Ayrton at Toleman - Competitive in a new car with two podiums
Ayrton Senna Special: Technical Analysis 1: The Toleman TG183 (1984)
Ayrton Senna Special: Teammate 1: Johnny Cecotto
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 16 - Ayrton at Lotus - Facial Paralysis
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 17 - Ayrton at Lotus - Masterclass in Estoril
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 18 - Ayrton at Lotus - An unfortunate first half of the season
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 19 - Ayrton at Lotus - Many podiums and a victory at Spa-Francorchamps
Ayrton Senna Special: Technical Analysis 2: The Lotus 972
Ayrton Senna Special: Teammate 2: Elio 'The Gentleman'
Ayrton Senna Special: Extra 1: Veto 1

Ayrton Senna Special: Part 20 - Second year at Lotus - Titanium competition with Nigel Mansell
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 21 - Second year at Lotus- A good start and the lead in the championship after Detroit (1986)
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 22 - Second year at Lotus - Decay in the second half of the season (1986)
Ayrton Senna Special: Teammates 3: John Crichton-Stuart, 7th Marquess of Bute (1986) 
Ayrton Senna Special: Extra 2 - Gérard Ducarouge - Designer of Ayrton's winning Lotus (1986)

Ayrton Senna Special: Exclusive Interview 1: Allard Kalff: 'I still honour Roland on April 30'.
Ayrton Senna Special: Exclusive Interview 2: Allard Kalff: "I only saw at Linate Airport that Ayrton had died"
Ayrton Senna Special: Exclusive Interview 3: Allard Kalff: "The accidents in 1994 were coincidence, in 1995 nothing happened"
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 23 - Last year at Lotus - Excellent season with the 1986 Honda engine (1987)
Ayrton Senna Special: Part 24 - Last year at Lotus - The victories at Monaco and Detroit (1987) 

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Singapore
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Russian
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Japan
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Mexico
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Brazil
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates
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15 - Mar 17
Australia Albert Park
29 - Mar 31
12 - Apr 14
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10 - May 12
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United Kingdom Silverstone
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6 - Sep 8
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United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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