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Sebastian Vettel Leaves Father Norbert Teary Eyed as He Pays Tribute to Ayrton Senna at Imola

Vidit Dhawan

Sebastian Vettel Leaves Father Norbert Teary Eyed as He Pays Tribute to Ayrton Senna at Imola

Four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel was at Imola this past weekend to pay homage to the late great Ayrton Senna. Vettel arranged a tribute for Senna that was so heartwarming that it made his father Norbert emotional.

Norbert remains a huge fan of Senna. As such, watching his son Sebastian drive the three-time World Champion’s 1993 McLaren around Imola – the same circuit where Senna lost his life 30 years ago- made him tearful.

Vettel had something special planned for his lap around the Imola circuit ahead of the Emilia-Romagna GP. Not only did he pay tribute to Senna, but he also remembered Roland Ratzenberger, the other F1 driver who lost his life on the same weekend.

After his drive, he brought out both the Brazilian flag and the Austrian flag (Ratzenberger’s home nation) to cap off his tribute. Vettel said (as quoted by ESPN),

It’s difficult to put in words. It was one of the strongest emotions I’ve felt behind the wheel despite being alone on the track and not even racing. Incredible. When I got the flags out it was so powerful.”

Vettel’s drive around the circuit wasn’t the only tribute the former Red Bull driver organized. On Thursday, he, along with other F1 drivers, took part in a run around the circuit wearing Senna-inspired T-shirts.

All the drivers other than Max Verstappen and Valtteri Bottas wore them. The fact that they did not sport the T-shirt on the occasion seemed surprising. But as it turns out, there wasn’t anything the duo could have done.

Why Max Verstappen didn’t wear the Ayrton Senna T-shirt

Out of Bottas and Verstappen, the latter, in particular, was on the receiving end of a lot of flak from fans on social media for not wearing the Senna T-shirt.

Thankfully, Brazilian reporter Marina Baker came to the Dutchman’s rescue, revealing that both his and Bottas’ t-shirts were stolen before the race. That’s why they chose to do the run wearing their own team’s colors.

However, Verstappen did not choose to give any explanation regarding the same, despite having a valid reason.

Instead, the 26-year-old carried on with his business as usual. He qualified on pole on Saturday before winning the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on Sunday, finishing just ahead of McLaren’s Lando Norris.

His pole in Imola was special as he equaled Ayrton Senna’s record for securing the most consecutive pole positions (eight). The Red Bull driver believes that his equaling Senna’s record was a nice way of paying homage to the legendary Brazilian driver.

Post Edited By:Somin Bhattacharjee

About the author

Vidit Dhawan

Vidit Dhawan


Vidit Dhawan is the F1 writer and Editor at The SportsRush. He fell in love with the sport at first sight when F1 visited India in 2011. The noise and the racing action from lights out and away we go to the chequered flag are what keeps him at the edge of his seat at all times. Vidit has been a lifelong Fernando Alonso fan and sees Charles Leclerc as the future of the sport. Other than F1, he also follows football and tennis closely.

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