Home hero Ayrton Senna drives the fans wild - Sutton Images

The first race of the 1986 season, highly regarded as one of the best seasons the sport has ever seen, started at the Jacarepaguá circuit in Rio de Janiero, and the local crowd wasn’t disappointed by their home heroes. Nelson Piquet had moved to Williams from Brabham and took an emotional home victory ahead of compatriot Ayrton Senna, who had taken pole position. The race would be overshadowed by Frank Williams car accident only a few weeks previously, which resulted him being consigned to a wheelchair.

It was ’80s racing at it height – turbos, big wheels and sparks. As the season progressed, it was clear that many cars were competitive. Both Williams of Piquet and Nigel Mansell, who retired on the first lap in Rio trying to overtake Senna, proved to be a force to be reckoned with, but it would be Alain Prost that would take the title at the very last race in Adelaide. The Frenchman capitalised on tyre issues for both of his rivals to take his second title in three years, much to many people’s surprise.

Thanks to Sutton Images, we’re able to bring you images of the 1986 Brazil race!