TeamVodafone team manager Adrian Burgess says memories of his days at McLaren will come flooding back when he attends Speedcafe.com’s Queensland premiere of the Senna movie tonight.
The Englishman joined the McLaren Formula One team in 1991 – working with Ayrton Senna until the Brazilian moved to Williams in 1994.
Burgess will be joined by a cast of motorsport identities tonight at the Pacific Fair cinemas, including former World Champions Jack Brabham and Mick Doohan, and current V8 Supercars stars Jamie Whincup, Steven Johnson, Alex Davison and Tim Slade.
“I’m looking forward to seeing it,” Burgess told Speedcafe.com of the Senna Movie.
“It’ll be interesting to talk to other people and see what they think about learning a bit more about the man. It’ll bring back a few memories and it’ll be a nice way to celebrate such a great career.
“It’s hard to go past Ayrton when you talk about the greats of our industry. I’ve never met anyone that you’d say was as great as he was.
“Obviously different drivers have different characters and are great in their own rights, but we haven’t ever seen anyone quite like him.”
Burgess attended a handful of races each year in his initial role of McLaren test team manager before moving into the racing operation full-time in 1994, and has both good and bad memories from the era.
“We had it fairly tough,” said Burgess of fighting against the might of Williams in the early 1990s.
“But I was there at Donnington in 1993 in the wet (when Senna embarrassed the opposition), and got to see him work first hand at test days and a few other occasions.
“I’ll never forget standing on the grid at the Brazilian Grand Prix just listening to the crowd going mad. It was an overwhelming experience.
“Moving to the race team in 1994 meant I was unfortunately at Imola that year, and the film will obviously bring up some bad memories from there as well.
“I worked with Roland Ratzenberger a bit before too and I knew him fairly well, so it wasn’t a weekend I want to remember.”
Burgess worked at McLaren until 1999 when he moved to British Formula 3 team Carlin Motorsport. After a brief return to Formula One in 2005 with Midland F1 (now Force India), Burgess joined Dick Johnson Racing, culminating in winning the 2010 V8 Supercars Championship title with former Carlin driver James Courtney.
While tickets for tonight’s event have sold out, those in Melbourne wishing to see the film are invited to attend Speedcafe.com’s advanced screening on August 9 – two days before the official release.
Set for 7:00pm at Cinema Nova, 380 Lygon Street Carlton, tickets are $25.00 with all proceeds going to Jason Richards and his family.
To book tickets, please contact Leisa Emberson via [email protected] or (03) 9001 1360.