Born on April 21st

Died on April 21st

Georges Boillot

1884 - 1916

Ira Vail

1893 - 1979

Zora Arkus-Duntov

1910 - 1996

Roy Russing

1910 - 1946

Robert A Koehler

1921 - 2003

Gerry Marshall

1941 - 2005

Events on April 21st

Interesting and notable events from the history of motor sport.


On the 21st April 1985, Senna, who had just turned 25, drove the Lotus 97T at the Portuguese Grand Prix to take his first F1 win.

It was his second race for Lotus and the first in the wet, and it was very wet. Senna hadn't even driven the car in the wet before, not in testing or practice. The morning of the race dawned overcast and as rain began to fall before the start, Senna led the field away. The conditions were terrible and in today's world of F1 it would certainly not have started. It was as close as the field were going to get to him on that day as he proceeded to lap the entire field up to the Ferrari of Michele Alboreto and he was over a minute behind.

With the car on the absolute limit of grip for much of the time especially around half distance when the rain was at its heavyest, he delivered a master class in extreme wet weather driving. Such was his dominance he lapped the entire field up to the Ferrari of Michele Alboreto running a distant second, over a minute behind Senna who had by this time lifted off a bit!

It was his first of 41 career F1 victories and a legend was born. The performance stunned his rivals and established him as a global sporting icon and a national hero in his native Brazil.


1993 had seen Mansell cross the pond to race in the PPG Indy Car World Series. He made his debut on an oval circuit for the second round at the Phoenix International Raceway. However it ended in tears when his Lola struck a wall at 170mph during a practice session.

He was knocked unconscious and flown to hospital by helicopter. He was released with concussion and bruises to his right shoulder. He had already won the first IndyCar race of the season which had been held on a street circuit at Surfers' Paradise in Australia. He went on to win the Series.