Some of our readers may be too young to remember, but in his heyday, Ayrton Senna was the biggest thing in racing. The Brazilian racer took home the F1 driver’s championship in 1988, 1990, and 1991 before his life was cut short when his car collided with a retaining wall at over 230 kilometers (143) miles per hour during the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
Japanese motorsport fans have a particular fondness for Senna. Aside from having some of his most memorable races at Japan’s Suzuka Circuit, Senna won all three of his championships in cars powered by Honda engines, and was also involved in the production of the company’s flagship NSX sports car.
Using telemetric data Honda has recreated Senna’s record-breaking 1989 lap of Suzuka in light and sound as part of an incredible video posted on the company’s website.
Developed by Honda’s internavi navigation system team, the video’s combination of howling exhaust note and ethereal motion over the dark tarmac has provoked an emotional response from viewers.
“What’s happening to me? I’ve got goose bumps, and I can’t stop shaking.”
“Just one word: awesome.”
“It’s like you can see Senna’s soul.”
“Senna lives! And he’s still got it!”
“Oh man, I can’t stop crying.”
There are still a few years left before Honda’s announced return to F1 in 2015, but if they’re bringing the same amount of passion that went into the making of this video, it’ll be worth the wait. In the meantime, you can find us in front of our PC with our headphones in. This video is best watched at sound levels that would definitely annoy the neighbors.