• April 17 down the years

Schumacher under Senna's eye

April 17 down the years
Ayrton Senna walks away from his first corner accident at Aida © Sutton Images

Michael Schumacher's second win of the 1994 season was tainted with controversy after rumours that his team was running an illegal traction-control system escalated. Schumacher won the Pacific Grand Prix at Aida with ease after Ayrton Senna, who had started from pole, was taken out by Mika Hakkinen's McLaren. Senna spent the rest of the race watching from behind the barrier, listening intently to the engine-note of the leading Benetton. He later told Lotus team boss Peter Collins that he was absolutely certain it was running traction control from what he had heard trackside. Senna died in an accident at the next race in San Marino and Schumacher went on to win the championship.

Tazio Nuvolari won the fourth Monaco Grand Prix by less than three seconds from Rudolf Caracciola who had been closing for the last ten laps. Nuvolari had started from 12th on the grid in his Alfa Romeo Monza 8C-2300 but came through to win the 100 lap race in a time of just over three-and-a-half-hours.

Alain Prost won his second home grand prix for Renault at the Paul Ricard circuit in France. It was a dominant victory for Prost ahead of Nelson Piquet, who had fought from sixth place and past the other Renault of Eddie Cheever to finish 29 seconds shy. Prost won another three races that season but a spate of retirements in three of the final four races gave the championship to Piquet and Brabham by just two points.

Six-time race winner Riccardo Patrese was born in Padova. He was something of an F1 journeyman, starting 256 races in his career for five different teams over 16 seasons. Most of his success came towards the end of his career for Williams, when he played a dutiful No. 2 role in 1992 to world champion Nigel Mansell.