Bruno Senna Takes Sideways Pole In France

Bruno Senna Takes Sideways Pole In France

Bruno Senna, nephew to the late Ayrton Senna, has taken a somewhat strange pole position for the GP2 event in Magny Cours this weekend. Following the Formula One circus around, GP2 is a major feeder series to Formula One, and young Senna is one of the stars pipped for future success. However, his antics in France have shown tanacity that I’ve only heard of from his uncle. In fact, if my vague memory serves correct, didn’t Ayrton get a good result in Nevers in much the same way as this…?

Clipping the kerbs in the final complex, Senna flung his iSport car over the line and took the pole away from local driver Romain Grosjean by 0.037s before hitting the wall and damaging the rear of his car, stopping the session in the process.

I’m obviously delighted to take pole, but that wasn’t quite how I’d planned to do it. The car was really well balanced today – perfect, in fact – but every time I tried to put a lap together I was delayed by traffic. When it came to my final run I just gave it everything I had and, unfortunately, the car got away from me at the final chicane. I lost a bit of time as I approached the line because I was fighting to regain control and had my foot on the brakes, but overall it was clearly a decent lap. It was my final chance to set a really good time and the incident was just one of those things. Bruno Senna.

In 1991, Ayrton spun his McLaren as he crossed the finish line on his final qualifying lap, but knowing the timing beacon is some distance before the painted start/finish line, Senna just pointed his car at the line and kept his foot down. The result was a damaged car, just as Bruno’s is, but it also netted him a a third place on the grid, improving his result just as it likely will for for Bruno.


  • Ralph Firman got 18th in qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix of 2003 pointing 135 degrees away from the direction he should have been going. This was because he was in the middle of a spin that eventually led to him striking a wall, bouncing off and scattering components as he returned to the pit lane. Mind you, he’d probably have qualified 18th anyway…

  • Yes, but…Senna actually lost control on the oil from Olivier Grouillard’s blown-up Fondmetal, rather than actually doing it deliberately.

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