Rubens Barrichello has revealed on a Brazilian TV show that he has no recollection of Ayrton Senna’s funeral in 1994 – even though he was one of the pall bearers.
Barrichello said that the concussion he suffered in his practice crash at Imola’s Variante Bassa chicane the week before Senna’s funeral erased much of that month from his memory.
Barrichello was in the second row of the coffin carriers during the funeral ceremony, behind Gerhard Berger and Emerson Fittipaldi.
“I don't remember my crash at Imola,” Barrichello told Fox Sports. “I was trying to make my name. I thought I could do that, and tried. But my car didn't physically support what I thought was possible. And I had a huge crash.
“I came back to Sao Paulo, Ayrton Senna had died – and even God was good to me because I had a certain amnesia. For a month, I forgot many things.
“I do not remember carrying Ayrton’s coffin. I do not remember. I see the pictures, but I don't remember.”
Returning to the cockpit post-Imola ’94
Speaking about how he returned to racing with the Jordan team after his own huge crash, and the deaths that weekend of Senna and Roland Ratzenberger, Barrichello said he drove like a “maniac”.
“I remember asking myself then, ‘Now what? Will you be afraid to get into a car? Oh, you will not be afraid, will you?’
“Then I decided in my mind: I will go and in my first fast lap I'll be a maniac. I'm will take another big crash at the same level, or I will beat my personal track record.
“And thank God I beat my personal track record. That's when I decided that was what I wanted to do.”