1993 Portuguese Grand Prix, otherwise known as the XXII Grande Premio de Portugal, was the fourteenth round of the 1993 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Autódromo do Estoril in Estoril, Portugal, on the 26 September 1993. The race would see Michael Schumacher secure his second career victory for Benetton-Ford Cosworth, as Alain Prost secured his fourth and final World Championship title.
McLaren would dominate the pre-race news, with Michael Andretti leaving the team to return to the United States. His spot was taken by Mika Häkkinen, who had been secretly testing a Lamborghini engined McLaren, only for the Woking based squad to announce a deal with Peugeot for 1994.
Qualifying would see Damon Hill manage to beat teammate Prost to pole position, with the two Williams-Renaults in a class of their own at the head of the field. Best of the rest would be Häkkinen on his McLaren debut, causing quite a stir by beating teammate Ayrton Senna to third, while Schumacher would start from sixth behind Jean Alesi's Ferrari.
A stall for Hill on the formation lap would gift Prost the perfect chance to lead off the line, although the returning Häkkinen would try his best to challenge the Frenchman into turn one. They were joined by a lunging duo of Senna and Alesi, with the resulting scramble seeing Alesi emerge with the lead ahead of Häkkinen and Senna, while Prost was a stunned fourth.
Senna duly vaulted past Häkkinen to secure second later on the opening lap, before engaging in a sustained campaign to try and rob Alesi of the lead. Prost, meanwhile, would find himself stuck behind a very defensive Häkkinen, while Hill made a lot of progress from the back, running in tenth by lap eight.
The order at the head of the field would be shaken up drastically on lap 20, with Senna suffering an engine failure while Alesi and Häkkinen made their stops. That left Prost in the lead ahead of teammate Hill, who had just moved into fifth before Senna's failure, while Schumacher, who had already stopped was up to third.
Indeed, the German racer would be put into the lead of the race when the two Williams-Renaults made their stops, prompting the Benetton squad to change their plan to a one-stop. Prost, meanwhile, would rejoin in second ahead of Alesi, with Hill making his way up to third a few laps after they left the pits.
With Schumacher nursing his tyres there was little surprise that Prost and Hill were able to sweep onto the back of the German. However, as they caught the back of the Benetton the leaders hit lapped traffic, with Schumacher taking every opportunity he could get while Prost wanted to secure the Championship.
That would ultimately settle the race, with Schumacher hanging on for victory, while Prost won the Championship in second. Hill duly completed the podium ahead of Alesi, who lost a full minute with a second stop, while Karl Wendlinger and Martin Brundle secured the remaining points.
Victory for Damon Hill ensured that the title fight would continue on into the Portuguese Grand Prix, with the Brit 23 points behind Championship leader Alain Prost with three races to go. However, Hill would have to win in Portugal in order to keep his title hopes alive, while Prost would claim the crown regardless if he finished on the podium at Estoril. Ayrton Senna also remained in the fight, but was now a dark horse, while Michael Schumacher looked set to finish fourth.
In the Constructors Championship Williams-Renault had added to their all conquering tally, leaving Italy with 139 points. Benetton-Ford Cosworth had remained their closest challengers, although McLaren-Ford Cosworth had cut the gap between the two British squads to just two points with three races to go. Behind, it had been a positive weekend for Ferrari, who left their home race just a point behind fourth placed Ligier-Renault.
The full entry list for the 1993 Portuguese Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1993 Portuguese Grand Prix are outlined below:
|3||7||Mika Häkkinen||McLaren-Ford Cosworth||1:12.956||1:12.443||+0.949s|
|4||8||Ayrton Senna||McLaren-Ford Cosworth||1:12.954||1:12.491||+0.997s|
|6||5||Mick Schumacher||Benetton-Ford Cosworth||1:13.403||1:14.135||+1.909s|
|7||6||Riccardo Patrese||Benetton-Ford Cosworth||1:14.206||1:13.863||+2.369s|
|14||12||Johnny Herbert||Lotus-Ford Cosworth||1:15.831||1:15.183||+3.689s|
|17||4||Andrea de Cesaris||Tyrrell-Yamaha||1:16.072||1:15.904||+4.410s|
|18||11||Pedro Lamy||Lotus-Ford Cosworth||1:17.198||1:15.920||+4.426s|
|19||24||Pierluigi Martini||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:15.942||1:16.323||+4.448s|
|24||23||Christian Fittipaldi||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:16.651||1:16.864||+5.157s|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
- Bold indicates a driver's best/qualifying time.
|Andrea de Cesaris||18|
- * Hill would start from the back of the grid after stalling on the formation lap.
The full results for the 1993 Portuguese Grand Prix are outlined below:
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- * Warwick and Patrese were still classified despite retiring as they had completed 90% of the race distance.
- Alain Prost declared as the 1993 FIA Formula One World Championship Champion.
- This was Prost's fourth and final World Championship title.
- 159th and final Grand Prix for Lola as a constructor.
- 200th Grand Prix entry for Prost.
- Sixth and final race for Emanuele Naspetti.
- Michael Schumacher claimed his second career victory.
- Benetton claimed their seventh win as a constructor.
- Damon Hill recorded the 100th fastest lap for Elf as a lubricant supplier.
Second place for Alain Prost in Portugal ensured that the Frenchman had done enough to claim the 1993 FIA Formula One World Championship with two rounds to spare. Indeed, the Frenchman would leave Estoril with a 25 point lead over closest challenger Damon Hill, with the Brit only able to score twenty points across the remaining two rounds. The Brit was, however, set to finish second, holding a nine point advantage over third placed Ayrton Senna.
In the Constructors Championship Williams-Renault had been able to again extend their title winning lead, moving onto 149 points after fourteen races. Benetton-Ford Cosworth, meanwhile, had inched further away from McLaren-Ford Cosworth, leaving Portugal twelve points ahead with 32 left to fight for. Benetton could therefore secure the runner-up spot in Japan, while Ferrari had claimed fourth from Ligier-Renault.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 'Portuguese GP, 1993', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr546.html, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 'Portugal 1993: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1993/portugal/engages.aspx, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 'Portuguese Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1993/races/602/portugal/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 'Portuguese Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1993/races/602/portugal/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 'Portugal 1993: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2019), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1993/portugal/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 'Portugal 1993: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1993/portugal/classement.aspx, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 '14. Portugal 1993', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1993/portugal.aspx, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 '1993 Portuguese GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1993&gp=Portuguese%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 30/07/2019)
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