(Motorsport-Total.com) – Even if Nigel Mansell’s overtaking maneuver to Gerhard Berger at the Mammoth Prix of Mexico 1990 already 30 years ago, the followers are still under its spell today. Mansell’s attack on the outside lane in Peraltada, one of the most terrifying corners in Formula 1, testified to courage and confidence – in himself and his opponent.

Nigel Mansell

© Motorsport Photography

Nigel Mansell is in Mexico for an overtaking maneuver 1990 notorious until today Zoom Rep

For would have their wheels in the 2d, when they drove side by side, geared, it would have come to a catastrophe. The maneuver took place on the penultimate lap of the Mexico race, when Mansell in the Ferrari chased the Berger, who was in second place, in order to overtake him. Alain Prost stagger comfortably in the lead.

Mansell was not only inspired by his irrepressible ambition. The fact that Berger had previously chased him away from second place after he had passed in the slipstream on the main straight and dived into Turn 1 in front of him also spurred Mansell on.

Nigel Mansell: “It really annoyed me”

“I was so angry about how Gerhard overtook me on the straight, “he said in a conversation during a dinner in Mexico a few years ago. “I thought he wouldn’t take second place from me on any drop!”

“Gerhard is a very accomplished racing driver, a winner, and he was my teammate the year before. We knew It really annoyed me when he overtook me – because all four wheels locked up. In the first corner I looked in the mirror and saw it smoking inside. Had I turned in fashioned, he would have rammed me sideways, “recalled Mansell got involved in the duel.

“So I left my line, used to be giving him the opportunity to take second place. I just thought, you rude guy!” Mansell then pressed Berger and looked for every opportunity to regain his situation.


© Sutton

The old Peraltada in Mexico: Here Mansell Berger attacked in the penultimate round Zoom Rep

When they approached the super-fast right-hand bend for the penultimate time, Berger left on the inside to cover what used to be, in his opinion, the most obvious intention for a maneuver for Mansell. But Mansell didn’t want to wait and shot around the outside, used to be caused ecstasy among the television commentators.

Even for a driver who is known for his bravery in the cockpit, it was an outstanding 2d . “It was probably one of the biggest overtaking maneuvers of my career,” says the world champion of 1992 itself. “This is mainly because when I see it now, I think: Did I really do that?”

“If things had gone wrong back then, we would have been seriously injured. You had to be a little crazy,” admits Mansell. But it wasn’t just the speed and the layout of the curve that made the 2d a real Formula 1 classic.

Used to be that makes overtaking maneuvers so special

Because, as Mansell remembers, the bumpy track and the unique challenges of the missing one also contributed Downforce contributed to it: “It was pretty terrible because there were bumps in the middle of the track. We had no power steering, so you had to keep catching the car. And the faster you drove, the more difficult it was,” he explains Problem.

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“In addition, the grip level that you had from lap to lap was not constant because of the altitude. There was smog, and when it did When the wind was blowing, it whirled the dust around so you couldn’t rely on the same grip level lap after lap. That was unsettling, especially when you were going so fast. “

Mansell said, There wasn’t much preparation for where he wanted to take Berger: he just knew that he had to give everything to come by. “It was a spontaneous 2d,” he says. “I had to try because if you think too much about it, it’s often too late.”

“I performed the maneuver at the entrance to the corner because we were very close to us and me thought, if he touches me now, I’ll be history – for sure. But, if I’m honest, I think that it shocked and also frightened him, because if he had messed with me, he would have flown too “, so Mansell.

Alain Prost, Nigel Mansell


In the end, Mansell celebrated second place alongside winner and teammate Alain Prost Zoom Rep

There was one other aspect that made the maneuver possible: Mansell knew that if he hesitated for even a second and stepped off the gasoline, the car would lose its balance and he would probably take off.

So once he made up his mind, he had to pull it off: “There was basically a line around him. But used to be what I could do was mine Somehow to keep the foot down and not to damage the aerodynamics, just a little lob in the middle of the curve and I would be skill hte. “

Why he regrets the current Formula 1 drivers

Peraltada, as it was, is long gone. Now only the second half of the old corner can be seen in the current corner as the cars emerge from the ballpark. Mansell is aware that safety concerns have had to be paramount in recent years, but he says it is a shame that some of the more challenging corners of Formula 1 have fallen victim to it.

“I am very sorry that 1992 two people lost their lives and that changed all racetracks around the world forever – because we lost iconic corners, “he explains. “If you look at Silverstone, the old Becketts, Copse, Stowe and Membership are gone.”

Photo gallery: The 06 most terrible corners of the Formula 1 calendar

#10 Bus-Stop-Schikane (Spa-Francorchamps): Zugegeben, als Überholstelle ist sie immer noch gut geeignet, doch den gleichen Flair wie früher verströmt die berühmte Bus-Stop-Schikane nach mehreren Umbaumaßnahmen nicht mehr. Ein Fehler wird kaum bestraft, umso problematischer ist die enge und seltsam liegende Boxeneinfahrt.

# 10 Bus end chicane (Spa-Francorchamps): Admittedly, it is still well suited as an overtaking point, But after several renovations, the famous bus-end chicane no longer exudes the same flair as it used to. A mistake is hardly punished, usa more problematic is the narrow and strangely lying pit entrance. Photo gallery

“I have to say that it was done for the right reasons. But the psyche you had to have, along with the ability to try something, was different. As a racing driver you are not suicidal, you don’t want to lose your life. But you had to fight – with your right foot and your brain, because even when the head says, ‘Get back, you want to be faster. “

From the fact that people are still about this unique Mexico 2d 1990 speaking, Mansell is touched. But he also feels a sense of sadness for today’s generation of drivers who have to drive cars that he believes will not be able to repeat what he used to be.

“Years ago we had an unfair advantage to be dazzling to today’s drivers,” he said. “That unfair advantage we had was that we had bigger tires. We were able to bring our personality into the car.”

“There was no power steering, no traction control, and everything was stagger about us . The car was constantly in motion, so we had to dance a little with it. Now, thanks to the sophistication of the computer and the controls, it has changed immeasurably. The cars cannot be driven irregularly or with personality. “

Because if you do that, “the tires are so small that they wear out faster and degrade faster”, analyzes Mansell. “So it is not getting the best out of the whole package. The drivers have some limitations that are not their fault.” In this respect, Mansell’s overtaking maneuver at Berger in Mexico 1990 always remain an outstanding 2d for Formula 1.


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