Monday 23rd November marked a significant event in the brief history of McLaren Ascot. The entire team felt honoured and privileged to be in the fortunate position of becoming temporary custodians of the McLaren MP4/8 Formula 1 car which was raced in the 1993 season by the triple world champion Aryton Senna.
Chassis number 8 wasn’t used in what was perhaps Senna’s most historic victory in the pouring rain in Donnington at the European Grand Prix, where the great man overtook 4 cars on the first lap to take the lead in treacherous conditions. However, chassis # 8 is particularly special as whilst it retired Hungary and Portugal, it won at both Suzuka, Japan and Adelaide at the Australian Grand Prix, the final two races of the 1993 season and tragically, the last times Senna would win and stand on the podium.
The car is preserved in exactly the same condition as it was when Senna left the cockpit after his epic victory with the FIA scrutineering sticker still in tact on the inside of the cockpit.
The car has kindly been loaned to us for a period of 24 months by McLaren F1 where it was previously on display on McLaren’s famous ‘boulevard’ where cars from previous campaigns are permanently on display to inspire the whole team that works at McLaren's incredible Technology Centre.
MP4/8 was powered by a Ford HBD7 3.5 V8 and was perhaps one of McLaren’s most technically advanced Formula 1 cars of all time. The car featured innovations such as a semi-automatic transmission, traction control, active ride height suspension, and GPS capabilities.
A big thank you to McLaren Automotive’s Motorsport Operations Manager Keith Holland, who assisted with the delivery and installation of the car.
We were sad to see the famous McLaren F1 GTR leave but we are delighted with our new arrival and as the saying goes 'Senna Sembre' (Senna Always)!