How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1
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How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1

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Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. Nigel Roebuck recalls a remarkable champion.

The brown of the facsimile helmet wasn’t dark enough, but never mind: the pole position trophy won by Valtteri Bottas in Mexico was something to savour, and Valtteri – the epitome of Finnish calm – had a crack in his voice as he accepted it from Jackie Stewart. The power of Juan Manuel Fangio endures, and always will.

“The greatest racing driver who ever lived,” commented JYS, and many would concur. Once, at Interlagos, I saw him tap Senna on the shoulder, and Ayrton – momentarily annoyed – swung round, then saw who it was and, tears glistening, put his arms round the old man who was his earthly god.

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