World 10 Greatest Race Car Drivers of All Time

Alain Prost


Alain prost dans les padocks

Alain Prost is a famous French racing driver. A four-time Formula One Drivers’ Champion, only Michael Schumacher (seven-time championship) has equalled or surpassed his number of titles. From 1987 until 2001, Prost held the record for most Grand Prix victories. In 1999, Prost received the World Sports Awards of the Century in the motor sport category.


During the 1980’s and early 1990’s, Prost formed fierce rivalries, mainly with Ayrton Senna, but also Nelson Piquet and Nigel Mansell. In 1986, at the last race of the season, he beat Mansell and Piquet of Williams to the title after Mansell retired late on in the race, and Piquet was pulled in for a late precautionary pit stop. Senna joined Prost at McLaren in 1988, and the two had a series of controversial clashes, including a collision at the 1989 Japanese Grand Prix that gave Prost his third Drivers’ Championship.


Prost employed a smooth, relaxed style behind the wheel, deliberately modeling himself on personal heroes like Jackie Stewart and Jim Clark. He was nicknamed “The Professor” for his intellectual approach to competition, though it was a name he did not particularly care for. Skilled at setting up his car for race conditions, Prost would often conserve his brakes and tyres early on in a race, leaving them fresher for a challenge at the end.



See Also : How to Find and Fix Air Leaks in your Tubeless Tires



Nigel Mansell


Explaining

Photo by StuSeeger


Nigel Mansell is a retired British racing driver who won both the Formula One World Championship (1992) and the CART Indy Car World Series (1993). Mansell was the reigning F1 champion when he moved over to CART, becoming the first person to win the CART title in his debut season, and making him the only person to hold both titles simultaneously.


His career in Formula One spanned 15 seasons, with his final two full seasons of top-level racing being spent in the CART series. Mansell is the second most successful British Formula One driver of all time in terms of race wins, with 31 victories, and is seventh overall on the Formula One race winners list behind Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso, and Lewis Hamilton. He held the record for the most number of poles set in a single season, which was broken in 2011 by Sebastian Vettel. He was rated in the top 5 Formula One drivers of all time by longtime Formula One commentator Murray Walker. In 2008, Entertainment and Sports Programming Network put him in their top drivers of all-time. He was also ranked No. 9 of the 50 greatest race drivers of all time by the Times Online, on a list that also included such drivers as Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Jackie Stewart, and Jim Clark.


Mansell raced in the Grand Prix Masters series in 2005, and won the championship title. He was inducted to the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 2005.



A.J. Foyt


A.J. Foyt

Photo by twm1340


A.J. Foyt (“Super Tex”) is an American retired automobile racing driver. He raced in numerous genres of motorsports. His open wheel racing includes United States Automobile Club Champ cars and midget cars. He raced stock cars in NASCAR and USAC and won several major sports car racing events. He holds the USAC career wins record with 159 victories, and the American championship racing career wins record with 67.


He is the only driver to win the Indianapolis 500 (which he won four times), the Daytona 500, the 24 Hours of Daytona, and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Foyt won the International Race of Champions all-star racing series in 1976 and 1977. In the NASCAR stock car circuit, he won the 1964 Firecracker 400 and the 1972 Daytona 500. Foyt survived three major crashes that caused serious injuries, and narrowly escaped a fourth. Foyt’s success has led to induction in numerous motorsports halls of fame.



Richard Petty


Richard Petty 1984 Photo By Ted Van Pelt

Photo by Ted Van Pelt


Richard Lee Petty, nicknamed The King, is a former NASCAR driver who raced in the Strictly Stock/Grand National Era and the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. He is most well known for winning the NASCAR Championship seven times (Dale Earnhardt is the only other driver to accomplish this feat), winning a record 200 races during his career, winning the Daytona 500 a record seven times, and winning a record 27 races (ten of them consecutively) in the 1967 season alone.


Statistically he is the most accomplished driver in the history of the sport and is one of the most respected figures in motorsports as a whole. He also collected a record number of poles (127) and over 700 top-ten finishes in his 1,184 starts, including 513 consecutive starts from 1971–1989. Petty was the only driver to ever win in his 500th race start, until Matt Kenseth joined him in 2013. Petty is a member of the inaugural class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Hall in 2010.



Jimmie Johnson


Jimmie Johnson

Photo by AmyKay1974


Jimmie Kenneth Johnson is an American stock car racing driver and a six-time champion in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He drives the No. 48 Chevrolet SS for Hendrick Motorsports.


Johnson won his first Cup series championship in 2006 and with further wins in 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 became the only driver in NASCAR history to win five consecutive championships. During the 2011 season, Johnson finished sixth in points, while he finished third in 2012. In 2013, Johnson won his sixth championship, one fewer than Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt, who have the record for the most championships. Johnson is also a two-time Daytona 500 winner, with victories in 2006 and 2013. Between 2002 and 2015, Johnson has recorded six championships, 72 wins, 292 top-tens, and 33 pole positions.


Johnson became the first racing driver to become Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year (U.S.) in 2009, and has won Driver of the Year five times, most recently in 2013. He also topped Forbes.com’s Most Influential Athletes list for two consecutive years (2011, 2012). Johnson is also the only driver to have qualified for the Chase every single year since its inception in 2004.


Mario Andretti

Mario Andretti 1984

Photo by Ted Van Pelt


Mario Gabriele Andretti is a retired Italian American world champion racing driver, one of the most successful Americans in the history of the sport. He is one of only two drivers to win races in Formula One, IndyCar, World Sportscar Championship and NASCAR. He also won races in midget cars, and sprint cars. During his career, Andretti won the 1978 Formula One World Championship, four IndyCar titles (three under USAC-sanctioning, one under CART), and IROC VI. To date, he remains the only driver ever to win the Indianapolis 500 (1969), Daytona 500 (1967) and the Formula One World Championship, and, along with Juan Pablo Montoya, the only driver to have won a race in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Formula One, and an Indianapolis 500. No American has won a Formula One race since Andretti’s victory at the 1978 Dutch Grand Prix. Andretti had 109 career wins on major circuits.


Andretti had a long career in racing. He was the only person to be named United States Driver of the Year in three decades (1967, 1978, and 1984). He was also one of only three drivers to win races on road courses, paved ovals, and dirt tracks in one season, a feat that he accomplished four times. With his final IndyCar win in April 1993, Andretti became the first driver to win IndyCar races in four different decades and the first to win automobile races of any kind in five.


In American popular culture, his name has become synonymous with speed, similar to the global recognition of F1 driver Michael Schumacher in the last two decades.


Steve Kinser

Steve Kinser Williams Grove 1986

Photo by Ted Van Pelt


Steve Kinser is a professional sprint car racer. He has won 20 championships in the World of Outlaws (WoO) series, and currently drives the #11 Bass Pro Shops car. Kinser left the World of Outlaws in 2006 to compete with the National Sprint Tour series, but returned to the World of Outlaws for the 2007 season. ESPN included him on their list of top drivers of all-time in 2008.


He became a World of Outlaws driver in 1978. In 1987, he won 46 features, including 12 in a row, and 24 of the last 26 events. He has won the Knoxville Nationals a record 12 times, the Gold Cup Race of Champions 12 times, and the Kings Royal at Eldora 7 times. As of February of 2014, he had won twenty WoO championships and 577 “A” features as of February 16, 2014. He was inducted in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2005. He has been described as the best sprint racer ever by columnists and even his rivals.



Ayrton Senna

Senna

Photo by StuSeeger


Ayrton Senna da Silva was a Brazilian racing driver who won three Formula One world championships. He was killed in an accident while leading the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix. He was among the most dominant and successful Formula One drivers of the modern era and is considered by many as the greatest racing driver of all time. He is the most recent driver to have been killed in a Formula One World Championship event.


Senna began his motorsport career in karting, moving up to open-wheel racing in 1981, and winning the British Formula 3 championship in 1983. He made his Formula One debut with Toleman-Hart in 1984, before moving to Lotus-Renault the following year and winning six Grands Prix over the next three seasons. In 1988, he joined Frenchman Alain Prost at McLaren-Honda. Between them, they won all but one of the 16 Grands Prix that year and Senna claimed his first World Championship. Prost claimed the championship in 1989, and Senna his second and third championships in 1990 and 1991.


Senna has often been voted as the best and most influential Formula One driver of all time in various motorsport polls. He was recognised for his qualifying speed over one lap and, from 1989 until 2006, held the record for most pole positions. He was also acclaimed for his wet weather performances, such as the 1984 Monaco Grand Prix, the 1985 Portuguese Grand Prix, and the 1993 European Grand Prix. He holds a record six victories at the Monaco Grand Prix, and is the third most successful driver of all time in terms of race wins.



Michael Schumacher


Michael Schumacher

Photo by exit1979


Michael Schumacher is a retired German racing driver. Schumacher is a seven-time Formula One World Champion and is widely regarded as one of the greatest Formula One drivers of all time. He was named Laureus World Sportsman of the Year twice. He holds many of Formula One’s driver records, including most championships, race victories, fastest laps, pole positions, and most races won in a single season – 13 in 2004 (the last of these records was equalled by fellow German Sebastian Vettel nine years later). In 2002, he became the only driver in Formula One history to finish in the top three in every race of a season and then also broke the record for most consecutive podium finishes. According to the official Formula One website, he is “statistically the greatest driver the sport has ever seen.”


Schumacher and his younger brother, Ralf, are the only brothers to win races in Formula One, and they were the first brothers to finish 1st and 2nd in the same race, a feat they repeated in four subsequent races.


In December 2013, Schumacher suffered a serious head injury while skiing. He was airlifted to a hospital and placed in a medically induced coma, having suffered a traumatic brain injury. He was in the coma from 29 December 2013 until 16 June 2014. In November 2014, Schumacher was reported to be paralyzed and wheelchair-bound as a result of the accident.


source : www.carophile.com


See Also :

How to Find and Fix Air Leaks in your Tubeless Tires


How to wash your car without Water and Scratch



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