1991 Formula One World Championship

Article

May 19, 2022

The 1991 Formula One season was the 42nd FIA Formula One World Championship season. It lasted from March 10, 1991 to November 3, 1991. Ayrton Senna won his third (and final) world title this year. His main challenger was Nigel Mansell, who justified himself to Williams rather than retreat. Senna won the first four races starting from a pole position, leading the points race from the first race, which he did not hand over to anyone until the end of the year. Mansell was also strong with the Williams-Renault, but the reliability of the car was not yet the best. Two newcomers who later played a key role were also introduced during the season. Mika Häkkinen had a chance at Lotus and Michael Schumacher at the Belgian Grand Prix to replace Bertrand Gachot at Jordan. After his convincing performance, Benetton was signed to the last 5 races of the season. McLaren-Honda won the World Design Championship for the fourth time in a row ahead of Williams in third place.

Changes before the season

McLaren retained last year’s pilot pair, Ayrton Senna and Gerhard Berger. Due to the rules in force, McLaren got race numbers 1 and 2 and Ferrari got 27 and 28 back from them. The latter team was left there by Nigel Mansell after being treated only as number two driver everywhere for years, but this year he may have been the number one driver for Williams alongside Riccardo Patrese. Mansell was replaced by Jean Alesi, a young Frenchman who had already proven himself on the Tyrrell team. The Benetton team started the season with two Brazilians: Roberto Moreno and three-time world champion Nelson Piquet. Instead of Moreno, Michael Schumacher sat down during the season, amid controversial circumstances. The once glorious Lotus team was on the slope. They lost Martin Donnelly last year, who could no longer compete after his horror accident, and Derek Warwick also left Formula One. If that wasn’t enough, the main sponsor, Camel, also retired, and there were also changes in the team’s ownership. The painting of their new car, after a long time, became not black-gold and not yellow-blue, but the old classic white-dark green. Their pilot pair was Mika Häkkinen and Julian Bailey, the latter being replaced by Johnny Herbert. Instead of V12 Lamborghini engines, V8 Judd engines were used. The field said goodbye to three teams: EuroBrun hadn’t finished the previous season, Onyx had even planned to enter and started developing a new car, but eventually stepped back; while the terribly weak Life team, which never outperformed any race, also gave up. The Osella team was christened Fondmetal, their rider, their car, and the crew have remained unchanged since 1989. The Arrows team also changed its name to Footwork due to new Japanese investors. Two new teams have also arrived: the Jordan Grand Prix was already known in Formula 3000. His pilots were Bertrand Gachot and Andrea de Cesaris. Gach was prosecuted during the season and was replaced by Michael Schumacher, Alex Zanardi and Roberto Moreno. The other new team was Modena, which had an extremely close relationship with Lamborghini after the Mexican founding investor resigned. His pilots were Nicola Larini and Eric van der Poele. Effectively, the team was entirely Lamborghini, but the factory didn’t give its name to the project, especially because of the poor performance, so they were only in one season. Five teams were required to pre-qualify this season: cars from Jordan, Dallara, Modena, Fondmetal, and Coloni. The points system has also changed: instead of 9, the winner has already received 10 points, and all the points scored have counted, not just the top 11 results. The Wed.