Jim Clark vs Nigel Mansell

Champion of Champions

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These two British champions may have raced decades apart but there are some interesting similarities between them.

Both clinched champions with technical superior cars – Clark using the Lotus 25 to dominate the 1963 championship and the 33 to claim the 1965 crown. Likewise Mansell wielded the Williams FW14B to devastating effect in 1992.

And it’s possible to argue that car problems were a significant reason why both drivers they didn’t win more races and championships.

For several years mechanical failures were the only thing that kept Clark off the podium. A critical tyre failure cost Mansell the 1986 crown and more bad luck followed on several occasions in 1987.

So how are we to separate these two champions?

Clark lost his life in 1968 at the age of 32. What more could he have achieved had he raced on into his forties, as Mansell did?

It’s down to you to decide which of these drivers should go through to the next round of the Champion of Champions. Vote for which you think was best below and explain who you voted for and why in the comments.

Jim ClarkNigel Mansell
Titles1963, 19651992
Second in title year/sGraham Hill, Graham HillRiccardo Patrese
TeamsLotusLotus, Williams, Ferrari, McLaren
Notable team matesTrevor Taylor, Mike Spence, Graham HillNelson Piquet, Riccardo Patrese, Alain Prost
Wins25 (34.72%)31 (16.58%)
Poles33 (45.83%)32 (17.11%)
Modern points per start111.658.07
% car failures229.1732.62
Modern points per finish316.4511.98
NotesAn oil leak in the final race of 1962 cost him his first titleRunner-up in 1986 and 1987, the latter after back-breaking crash
Finished on the podium in every race where his car didn’t break down over the next three seasonsReturned to Williams in 1991, taking title in 1992
Killed in a Formula Two race during the 1968 season having won the first race of the yearQuit for good after two-race comeback for McLaren in 1995
BioJim ClarkNigel Mansell

1 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of races they started
2 The percentage of races in which they were not classified due to a mechanical failure
3 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of starts in which they did not suffer a race-ending mechanical failure

Round one

Which was the better world champion driver?

  • Nigel Mansell (15%)
  • Jim Clark (85%)

Total Voters: 604

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Images © Ford (Clark), Williams/Sutton (Mansell)

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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121 comments on “Jim Clark vs Nigel Mansell”

  1. Jim Clark, how I wished you’d let Graham Hill win one more title. You were the best of an era. I say on to the next round with you. Sorry, Nige.

    1. Like Senna, this gentleman passed away way too early. We could have been looking at Clark as a 10 time champion, but we’ll never know. But the same can be said of many drivers of that era. What a shame.

      By the way, I voted Clark without equivocation. :)

      1. ditto. mansell doesn’t stand a chance

      2. For several years mechanical failures were the only thing that kept Clark off the podium.

        Wins 25 (34.72%)

        If the first part is true, then the second is even more amazing.

        1. Yes it is, but even more amazing is his points scoring record. Out of his 49 finishes, only 9 were outside the points, which lets not forget, were only awarded down to 6th rather than the current “everyone gets a prize” system.

          1. Poles 46%, nearly half the races he was in he got pole. Some pretty impressive stats there.

          2. Poles 46%, nearly half the races he was in he got pole. Some pretty impressive stats there.

            That’s a pretty staggering statistic. He might go on to win this whole competition.

  2. Whoever gets Clark or Senna is on a justified one way ticket to an absolute hiding.

    1. What if they get each other then? :P

      1. I’m guessing we’ll end up with Fangio, Schumacher, Senna, and Clark in the semis. It’s anyone’s game from there.

        1. Prost or Stewart have a big say however…

          1. And Niki Lauda….

        2. Agree they are the best.
          Sorry for Nigel, but Jim was Jim. An urepeatable talent, a brave driver, an elegant and simple hearted gentleman.
          Anyway don’t forget Nigel quality: in my feeling he was the natural descendant of Gilles Villeneuve, and I’m very happy he eventually managed to get a title.

        3. Don’t forget Prost. His results over a 10 year period are simply amazing

        4. You guys aren’t keeping track of the draws. I’m fairly certain Schumacher runs into Clark in the next round.

          1. Also the way I see it, Senna won’t run into Clark unless both make it to the finals.

          2. It would be better if Keith posted a map of the draw, to be honest! :)

            MSC vs Clark in the QFs would be… very interesting.

          3. And don’t forget about Sir Jack

          4. Yea agreed. A ladder would be good.

          5. Made one. Apologies for the quality, it was hand-done on Paint: http://i1115.photobucket.com/albums/k557/Icthyes/F1FCoC1.png

            Based on the votes so far, Round 2 should look like this: http://i1115.photobucket.com/albums/k557/Icthyes/F1FCoC2.png

            Some delicious battles: Prost v Hakkinen and Senna v Hill are my two favourites. I reckon the QFs will be Schumacher v Clark, Prost v Lauda, Fangio v Stewart, Senna v Hamilton. Some VERY interesting ties there!

          6. Thanks Icthyes. Somebody else who’s keeping track of the draw.

            Somehow I don’t see Hamilton beating Brabham. Senna vs Brabham for the quarterfinals seems more likely to me.

          7. The only real test in Round 2 will be Lauda-Ascari, although I imagine the Hamilton fanboys might give Brabham a run in the last match.

          8. It’s only really because it’s Brabham (and maybe Raikkonen and Fittipaldi) that I think Hamilton will go through. Of all the triple champions, he seems to get ignored the most, very unfairly as I rate him above Piquet easily. If it was someone like Stewart or Clark, I wouldn’t fancy his chances at all.

          9. Agreed, but it would only be a temporary reprieve. If he wins against Brabham, Hamilton will face Senna in Round 3 and even he would vote for Senna in that matchup. 8)

          10. You are quite right Burnout. I have laid out the brackets for the competition, and unless Keith changes the draw mid-stream, Round Three will see Michael v Jim. And if I could be so bold Round Three:

            3-1 Michael v Jim
            3-2 Alain v Niki
            3-3 Juan Manuel v Sir Jackie
            3-4 Ayrton v “a possible surprise”

            No matter how one lays out the brackets, there will always be some vehemently opposed!

          11. Interesting, but there shouldn’t actually be a third place play off, as there is every chance the winner beat the second or third best in a much earlier round. Unless every champion was pitted against every other champion, the only definate thing that can taken is who is number one.

          12. Yeah, you know the only one I wouldn’t want to call out of the matchups in round 4 is Clark vs Schumacher. Personally I’ll vote Clark because I reckon his era was stronger an his speed on anything with 4 weels but tbf I could easily see schumi picking that one up.

            Thing is, I always saw Clark or Fangio challenging Senna, didn’t really see it in Schuey. Prost has very legitimate arguments marking him out easily Senna’s match, particularly the 11 best finishes rule deciding the 1988 title but it’s really quite hard.

        5. Maybe not, as pairings are random and it’s not said that the best drivers will be there till the end. Even if Senna and Schumacher were paired now, the result would be the same as if we were in the final, so the Champion of Champions will be the only one to beat everyone else, disregarding the order or ability of the other drivers.

  3. I’m a big Mansell fan, but Clark is simply better..

    1. Clark for me also.

      1. In my opinion Senna vs Schumacher is the most sensible final….but act of choosing is not always rational. We’ll see…

        1. Schumacher has the championships, but he is no where near the abosulute blisteing speed of Clark. The only sensible final is Clark vs Senna

          1. Schumacher was better than Senna and Ayrton knew it he simply couldn’t keep up with Michael

  4. It’s a pity Mansell has to go out at this stage, he’s one of the most impressive single-time champions (hell he beat a 3 time champ in round 1). He was never the top driver in the sport though, whereas Clark was, so he gets my vote.

    1. I suspect that reflects more on Piquet’s recent issues regarding his son, and not so much on his driving ability.

      But Mansell won fair and square, I won’t deny that.

  5. Jim Clark was simply awesome.
    Had it not been for his F2 crash at Hockenheim, who knows what he would have achieved?

    1. He’d have won the 1968 title, but that’s as good as it would get, I reckon. I’m guessing he’d stay on for 1969 (losing out to protege JYS and Tyrrell), before retiring to give way to Jochen for 1970.

      1. I don’t get how toy can make those speculations.He was just 32 when he died so it’s a lot easier to think that , in an age when most drivers raced almost until their 40’s, that he would have done several more years.

        1. But he might have been killed at another event soon after just as well, so hard to tell.

          For me he certainly beats Mansell, I was not even sure Mansell deserved to beat Piquet in that first round.

          1. I didn’t realize Mansell won the round. How did that happen? Oh yeah…more people voted for him…LOl.

      2. Impossible to say- I think Chapman would have kept him on as long as he wanted to stay. I doubt (but don’t know, obviously) that Rindt would have joined Lotus if Clark was still there. Andretti may have- he got the offer before Rindt did- but he had commitments in USAC. Who knows? But would I have liked to have seen it…

        1. “But I would have liked to have seen it…”

  6. sorry, i meant how you make those speculations.

  7. i liked mansell a lot. I was in 87 at silverstone and loved it. Eventhough i voted for piquet in the first round. And now he doesn’t stand a chance. Clark is a top five, mansell isn’t.

  8. I love Nigel, and you can’t argue the fact that he was an amazing driver, hell he’s the only single champion to beat a multiple one in the first round.

    Having said that, Clark is my choice for the overall win, so can’t vote against him now, he’s simply better then Nigel.

  9. Nigel was my hero, I have to vote him!

  10. So for only 36.11% did Clark not finish first, or retire through mechanical failure. That means if you were racing him in F1 at the time, then if his car did not fail there was almost a 50% chance you would definitely loose!

    I wonder what percentage of races he finished on the podium?

  11. Considering Moss, Brabham, Graham Hill, Stewart and Hulme were his contemporaries, this match has to go to Clark for achieving what he did against such strong opposition.

  12. Well…Mansell’s were Piquet, Prost, Senna, Lauda, Rosberg. Not bad.

    1. Not bad at all, but Mansell didn’t get results anywhere near what Clark got. 115 more race starts but only 6 more wins than Clark.

      1. Agree on that.

  13. I loved Mansell, almost a hero, his F1 career began as I started watching the sport at 9 years old. A more gutsy, determined, driver I’ve yet to see in the sport. Where Senna, Prost etc would guide the car smoothly and with style, Mansell would just grab it by the scruff of the neck and throw it down the road and round the next corner. Always exciting to watch, and why Champ Car suited him so well.

    But after all that, it is but his downfall here, as Clark was sublime in the Lotus at a time where death was always waiting just around the corner or over that blind crest. A more natural talent the world has never seen, yet plucked from us in his prime, a legend never to be forgotten.

    Oh… and he’s Scottish too :-)

    1. I like the way you describe them both. Have only seen the tail end of Mansell really, but I agree with what you describe – largely from the WDC year, the Indy championship, and courtesy of Youtube.

      So, Clark it is then.

    2. Agree 100% with Dougie.

      There has seldom been a more determined driver than Masell. (Was it Frank Williams who said that “If needs be, Nigel will carry the car over the finish line to win”). But that agression broke cars.

      Clark could nurse the fragile Lotus around the circuit without. heaven knows how, losing any time. Plus Clarke never whined.

      Clark wins.

  14. Shame, I’d rate Mansell way above some of the round two contenders, but he’s not going to win this one, sorry Nige

    1. It’s great to see the affection Mansell’s getting even as everyone votes for Clark.

  15. The percentage of poles Clark took is outstanding, sorry Nigel.

    Schumi vs Senna final would be nice to compare, although it may not happen. It would be great to see a competition tree at the end of this all Keith.

  16. Based on stats, Clark was probably one of the best F1 drivers ever, certainly one of the fastest. His percentage of poles and fastest laps are only beaten by Fangio, and his percentage of victories is only beaten by Fangio, Schumacher and Ascari. All these could have been higher if his car didn’t fail as much (a Lotus, about which Graham Hill once said that if he was ever passed by a wheel he knew he was in a Lotus).

    Who knows what could have been if he didn’t die in that horrible F2 accident (in a Lotus!)?

    So the choice is easy. Jim Clark wins with a wide margin.

  17. I voted for Jim Clark simply because he was so successful in so many different categories of motor racing.

    Oh and I grew up watching Ford videos that my dad had of the Mk1 Cortina being raced and rallied and a certain My Clark was shown in those to be very good!!

  18. Senna was the closest thing we ever got to Clark. Therefore, Clark easily. Sorry Nige, much as we love you.

  19. I voted Mansell, because he’s the underdog and I actually got to watch his career, rather than read about it. He impressed me as a driver and as a personality

  20. Clark was simply the best of his time, and one of the best ever. Mansell done well to keep up with Senna, Piquet and Prost, and really deserved more than 1 title, however, the same can be said for Jimmy who deserved far more than 2 titles.

  21. Much as I love Nige, gonna have to be Clark for this one. Don’t even know much about him apart from the obvious things, but the stats say it all really. Saying that, I voted Nigel, because someone had to :P

  22. Clark.The best driver I have ever seen in 50 years as an FI fan.
    BTW I am 65.

  23. My vote goes for Jim…

    Btw. I would like to share with you results of my Formula One analysis… I tried to exclude mechanical retirements benefit, so that the real best driver of the season become a winner at the end, because in early years a lot of luck played a part in overall results… Also all results are counted and I used the same point system 9-6-4-3-2-1 for every season to stay fair to all…

    Here are the results of the best driver analysis for each year:

    1950 – Fangio
    1951 – Ascari
    1952 – Ascari
    1953 – Ascari
    1954 – Fangio
    1955 – Fangio
    1956 – Moss
    1957 – Fangio
    1958 – Moss
    1959 – Moss
    1960 – Brabham
    1961 – P Hill
    1962 – G Hill
    1963 – Clark
    1964 – Clark
    1965 – Clark
    1966 – Brabham
    1967 – Clark
    1968 – G Hill
    1969 – Stewart
    1970 – Ickx
    1971 – Stewart
    1972 – Stewart
    1973 – Peterson
    1974 – Lauda
    1975 – Lauda
    1976 – Hunt
    1977 – Andretti
    1978 – Andretti
    1979 – G Villeneuve
    1980 – Jones
    1981 – Prost
    1982 – Arnoux
    1983 – Piquet
    1984 – Prost
    1985 – Senna
    1986 – Piquet
    1987 – Mansell
    1988 – Senna
    1989 – Senna
    1990 – Senna
    1991 – Senna
    1992 – Mansell
    1993 – Prost
    1994 – Schumacher
    1995 – Schumacher
    1996 – D Hill
    1997 – Schumacher
    1998 – Häkkinen
    1999 – Häkkinen
    2000 – Schumacher
    2001 – Schumacher
    2002 – Schumacher
    2003 – Schumacher
    2004 – Schumacher
    2005 – Alonso
    2006 – Alonso
    2007 – Hamilton
    2008 – Hamilton
    2009 – Vettel
    2010 – Vettel

    According to my analysis the best Formula One drivers are:

    01. Schumacher 8×1
    02. Senna – 5×1
    03. Fangio – 4×1
    04. Clark – 4×1
    05. Ascari – 3×1
    06. Moss – 3×1
    07. Stewart – 3×1
    08. Prost – 3×1
    09. Brabham – 2×1
    10. G Hill – 2×1
    11. Lauda – 2×1
    12. Andretti – 2×1
    13. Piquet – 2×1
    14. Mansell – 2×1
    15. Häkkinen – 2×1
    16. Alonso – 2×1
    17. Hamilton – 2×1
    18. Vettel – 2×1
    19. P Hill – 1×1
    20. Ickx – 1×1
    21. Peterson – 1×1
    22. Hunt – 1×1
    23. G Villeneuve – 1×1
    24. Jones – 1×1
    25. Arnoux – 1×1
    26. D Hill – 1×1
    27. Barrichello – 3×2
    28. Farina – 2×2
    29. Surtees – 2×2
    30. Fittipaldi – 2×2
    31. Regazzoni – 2×2
    32. J Villeneuve – 2×2
    33. Coulthard – 2×2
    34. Räikkonen – 2×2
    35. Massa – 2×2
    36. Gonzalez – 1×2
    37. Hawthorn – 1×2
    38. Von Trips – 1×2
    39. Gurney – 1×2
    40. Hulme – 1×2
    41. Rindt – 1×2
    42. Reutemann – 1×2
    43. Berger – 1×2
    44. Patrese – 1×2
    45. Button – 1×2
    46. Webber – 1×2
    47. Montoya – 4×3
    48. Scheckter – 3×3
    49. Brooks – 2×3
    50. Fagioli – 1×3


    1. I’d like to see the detail of that. Interesting method. I would have chosen Prost over Senna for a couple of years but never mind. Arnoux really deserves the place you give him.

    2. It is a very interesting method I have to say, but one that factors in a lot of “longevity” as a calculation method.

    3. Interesting stats, and very well done. I like what you’ve done here, and the top 8 I think is spot on.

      However, mechanical retirements are part of the game, and driving your car fast without tearing it apart is an important feature of a racing driver. Also, unfortunately, if you made each car bulletproof it’s not necessarily true that the finishing orders would have been as predicted. Whose to say that whoever retired in the lead/2nd/wherever would not have been caught and passed by another who has made better use of tyres & fuel.

    4. Great jobs.
      And pretty agreeble results!

      1. Thank you… :) I was also satisfied with the results, and think the same… The famous top 8 “Schumacher, Senna, Fangio, Clark, Ascari, Moss, Stewart and Prost” is there and also drivers like Peterson, Gilles Villeneuve or Rene Arnoux should have all one 1 title, if mechanical retirements weren t present to decide…

    5. Maybe do a percentage of best driver against number of seasons raced?

      e.g. Clark had 8 full seasons so 4/8 = 50%
      Schumacher had 16 full seasons so 8/16 = 50%

      P.s. Clark was the best ever IMO. He won 50% of all the races his car didn’t breakdown.

      1. If percentage will come to play, then the results will look like this:

        01. Ascari – 68,750 %
        02. Vettel – 58,064 % (still driving)
        03. Clark – 55,555 %
        04. Fangio – 52,941 %
        05. Senna – 49,689 %
        06. Schumacher – 49,626 % (still driving)
        07. Hamilton – 49,295 % (still driving)
        08. Moss – 37,878 %
        09. Stewart – 33,333 %
        10. Andretti – 25,781 %
        11. Prost – 23,618 %
        12. Alonso – 22,784 % (still driving)
        13. G Villeneuve – 22,388 %
        14. Häkkinen – 19,875 %
        15. Hunt – 17,391 %
        16. Lauda – 16,959 %
        17. Mansell – 16,042 %
        18. Piquet – 15,196 %
        19. P Hill – 14,893 %
        20. D Hill – 13,913 %
        21. Brabham – 13,821 %
        22. Peterson – 12,195 %
        23. Jones – 12,068 %
        24. G Hill – 12,000 %
        25. Ickx – 11,403 %
        26. Arnoux – 10,738 %

        27. Farina – 39,393 %
        28. Gonzalez – 26,923 %
        29. Massa – 26,315 % (still driving)
        30. Von Trips – 25,925 %
        31. Hawthorn – 22,222 %
        32. Räikkonen – 21,794 %
        33. J Villeneuve – 20,245 %
        34. Regazzoni – 19,696 %
        35. Fittipaldi – 18,750 %
        36. Surtees – 17,117 %
        37. Rindt – 16,666 %
        38. Barrichello – 16,447 % (still driving)
        39. Coulthard – 13,008 %
        40. Webber – 11,111 % (still driving)
        41. Gurney – 11,627 %
        42. Hulme – 9,821 %
        43. Reutemann – 9,589 %
        44. Button – 8,994 % (still driving)
        45. Berger – 7,619 %
        46. Patrese – 6,250 %

        47. Fagioli – 85,714 %
        48. Montoya – 70,212 %
        49. Brooks – 44,736 %
        50. Scheckter – 42,857 %

        Ascari and Clark were very dominant in some of their years, so I am not surprised to see them so high… Vettel and Hamilton who are both at the moment in top 10 will probably drop after some time, it all depends on their cars and their performances…

        1. You see, that is when comparisons between drivers that raced in different periods and had shorter or longer careers go wrong. Vettel is by not strech of the imagination the 2nd best driver ever to grace F1.

          1. And that is why I don t like to use the percentage… :) I just put it here, because it was requested by one user…

        2. It’s not even just f1 Clark won in every type of race

    6. Only thing I don’t get about that list is how Raikkonen wasn’t champion in 2005. Otherwise its a really interesting list, and certainly points out the dominant drivers! F1 would be a lot more boring if the results looked like that!

      1. In 2005 Alonso was the qualifyier and also racer of the year…

        1. In 2005 the MP4-20 was easily the best car, but was incredibly unreliable, because it was designed be Adrian Newey. That lost Raikkonen the championship. Alonso was just there to capitalise on McLaren’s failures.

          1. But Alonso was very consistent that year… If he wasn t in lead, he was driving almost every time on 2nd place… And btw. Räikkonen had a quite mediocre start to the season with McL being the best only from Imola…

          2. You’re right Marco. People forget that while the MP4/20 was the fastest car, the R25 wasn’t much slower. And Alonso was able to keep up with the McLarens, if not beat them.

          3. well, thing is according to your graph which takes away unreliabilities I just can’t see how Raikkonen wouldn’t have won. I’m happy to be convinced otherwise, but my memory of the season is that he was in the lead or near to the lead and then had mechanical failures. Just wondering how you worked it out that was all – its less to do with who was the best between Alonso and Raikkonen, more to do with who suffered from reliability issues, and that was certainly raikkonen

          4. Alonso was really consistent that year. He won four out of the first seven races and never really looked back. I don’t know if Kimi ever had the lead that year. Alonso deserved that season hands down. I think that Kimi only had 3 major mechanical faults all year and one of those was the European GP when he flat spotted his front tyre and the resulting vibration broke his front suspension.

  24. Mansell may be my favourite driver and the main reason I got into Formula 1 but I am going to have to vote for Clark on this one.

  25. I never knew Clark as a racer. Wasn’t born, so its hard to appreciate his brilliance. Mansell was a hero to me, and massively underrated because he won in a dominant car.

    Mansell for me. No disrespect for Clark meant by that but its simply a gut feeling.

  26. Clark, can be and will only be Clark. Theres a whole bunch of drivers i love and admire, but none more so then Clark.

  27. How on earth Mansel got to eliminate Nelson Piquet? It says a huge deal about the age and nationality of the people voting. Piquet not only won 3 championships in which he had tough competition (Mansel’s only championship was won in a Williams that was on a class of its own, and his team mate was Ricardo Patrese), but also won one of those championships over Mansel himself – and they were teamates. Of the 5 years Piquet had a winning car (80, 81, 83, 86 and 87) he was champion in 3 occasions and second in the remaining 2. Mansel also had a winning car on five occasions (86, 87, 90, 91 and 92) but only manages 1 first, 2 seconds and 2 thirds in those years. How on earth could he eliminate Piquet?!

    1. Piquet and Mansell were very equal and it is always tough to say who was the better driver… 3 titles against 1 tells nothing… It is the same as saying Button is a better driver then Moss, because he is world champion and Stirling isn t… There are also another things that decide, not just driver s abilites… Personally I rate Nigel a tiny bit higher then Nelson… And it looks like the other guys here, too…

      1. More a case of the sins of the son being visited on previous generations methinks.

      2. Marco, the Moss/Button argument is not real paralel to the Mansel/Piquet circunstances. The latter were not only contemporaries in F1, they were teamates for 2 years – it was a close match in 86 and 87, but Piquet won it.

    2. Very selective. Mansell should have won in 86 and 87, so straight away it could have been 3-2 to Mansell. Mansell also raced against Prost and Senna at the peak of their abilities, Piquet by comparison beat the likes of Jones, Rosberg and Reutemann and what year did he beat both Prost and Senna? Oh yeah that’s right, when he had a dominant car.

      1. Piquet beat Prost in 1983 when their cars were very closely matched. And what’s so shabby about beating the likes of Jones, Reutemann, and Rosberg?

      2. Piquet won all his championships with shrewdness more than heavy foot (in ’81 he took opportunity from Reutemann against Jones struggle, in ’83 from illegal fuel by Brabham and in ’87 from Mansell crash and mechanical failures). He wasn’t probably the best of his time, he never dominated, but for sure was a great driver, even if he got a lot in his career.

        At the end I see Mansell and PIquet at the same level. Mansell was faster, but Nelson was smarter in the hot moments.

      3. It could have been 3-2 to Mansell but it wasn’t. He was a great driver to watch and one of my favorites but I really do fail to see how he is a greater champion than Piquet.

      4. Icthyes: I really don’t know what to make of your Mansel-should-have-won 86 and 87 argument…ehr..he didn’t and he didn’t having the same equipment Piquet had. Senna, Prost, Piquet & Mansel had almost overlaping careers in F1 so I don’t understand your second comment either. Piquet did beat Prost to the title in 83 and Mansel in 87 (and almost beat both of them in 86, had he not been called by the team to make an unnecessary pitstop when he was leading in the last race in Australia). and he competed against Senna from 84 to 91. Regarding your question about what year Piquet beat both Prost and Senna, that was 87 – the same year he beat Mansel with equal equipment. When did Mansel beat both Prost and Senna? Never. In 92 he beat Senna but with such disparity in equipment that one can’t really count it – the only guy he was really competing against was Patrese… that was not a conquest, it was a gift.

    3. You disagree with the consensus and dip straight into the personal insults? I voted for Piquet but it was always going to be a close call.

      1. I never thought saying someone is young and British was an insult…I still don’t.

    4. also won one of those championships over Mansel himself – and they were teamates

      Mansell finished ahead of Piquet in the other year they were teammates.

  28. Clark wins on class alone. If Mansell had 10% of the outstanding personality of Jim Clark he would be a much better person.

  29. I voted Nigel Mansell because he’s my hero. No disrespect to Jimmy Clark who’s a legend !

  30. I think that Mansell had been very unlucky at some points in his career he could have easily taken the 86 title if his wheel had not gone and in 87 he hurt himslef badly I think he would have taken that one as well and became a three times champ. Also I don’t think its right to put them head to head as they were two very diffrent drivers Clark was known for being very smooth and precise wether as Mansell was known to be very aggressive and with his balls-out driving. So its not the most fairest of comparisons.

  31. Sorry, Nigel.

  32. This is a difficult one for me (if I could vote, I really need to register), while the records state Clark was “the best” of an era, I can’t really have an opinion of him because I’ve never seen him race. I can look at records and stats all day long but I wouldn’t see his racecraft from those.

    Mansell I have seen race, he was a monster with no fear, isn’t there a rumour he drove with a broken back once?, as such I’d have to vote for “Our Nige” as the brits say or “El Lione” as the Italian’s called him when he raced for Ferrari.

    Was Clark the best driver out of a pack of mules?, or was he truely gifted, and was Mansell a monster machine breaker and tyre ruiner in an era of some of the greatest and nastiest rivalries?

  33. I have read some of the posts in this Clark vs Mansell and it looks like a landslide for Clark.
    And of course it could not be different, I do not think any driver ever can safely be considered better than Clark.
    The overwhelming superiority is also a result of Mansell sneaking through the last round due to nationalistic sympathy vs the much more gifted and successful Piquet.

  34. Here is my list of winners according to the draws:

    Fernando Alonso vs Michael Schumacher -> Michael Schumacher
    Jim Clark vs Nigel Mansell -> Jim Clark
    Mika Hakkinen vs Alain Prost -> Alain Prost
    Alberto Ascari vs Niki Lauda -> Niki Lauda
    Emerson Fittipaldi vs Juan Manuel Fangio -> Juan Manuel Fangio
    Kimi Räikkönen vs Jackie Stewart -> Jackie Stewart
    Graham Hill vs Ayrton Senna -> Ayrton Senna
    Lewis Hamilton vs Jack Brabham -> Jack Brabham

    Michael Schumacher vs Jim Clark -> Michael Schumacher
    Alain Prost vs Niki Lauda -> Alain Prost
    Juan Manuel Fangio vs Jackie Stewart -> Juan Manuel Fangio
    Ayrton Senna vs Jack Brabham -> Ayrton Senna

    Michael Schumacher vs Alain Prost -> Michael Schumacher
    Juan Manuel Fangio vs Ayrton Senna -> Ayrton Senna

    Michael Schumacher vs Ayrton Senna -> Michael Schumacher

    But I know is gonna be Senna the winner, Schumi is not gonna die racing so he will never beat Senna.

    1. Lauda better then Ascari? Don t know what the others say, but for me CLEARLY not…

      1. CLark over Schumacer any day of the week.

        1. It would be quite close actually.

          1. Im not sure, Schumacher only beats Clark in number of championships. On points per fininis and poles, Clark obliterates him. The guy won every other race he finished, and started just under half on pole.

          2. Damn close on a few of them, I’m going to be voting Clark when he hits Schuey but it’s going to be easily the tightest round so far.

          3. That would be really close. Personally I couldn’t put Schumacher above Prost or Clark.

    2. I’m not so sure Lauda will beat ascari… But stragely I would think Ascari has a better chance of beating Prost then Lauda…just a feeling.

      As for Schumacher vs Clark, I am, and always have been a huge Schumacherfan, but I’ll vote Clark on that one…

  35. Clark wins this hands down. I loved how electric Nigel was but Clark was in my eyes the best there ever was. To be hounest i havent seen that much of him in action but the storys and stats add up to the greatest ever!

  36. As a Clark fan from the ‘60’s, it is great to see the comments being generated from this exercise. I always felt that so many newer F1 fans never recognized what a great driver he was. He just loved to drive, compete and win. Thanks Keith!!

    A 4 time winner at Spa (the old track), a place he hated. I always liked the quote from Spa in 1967: “Clark came through at the end of the first lap of the race so far ahead that we in the pits were convinced that the rest of the field must have been wiped out in an accident.”

    Granted, just one small example but when you look at his too short career, he had so much more yet to go.

    1. In Spa, Jim was much better in races, as he had there some pretty mediocre qualifyings…

  37. Had Clark lived he would have won the title in 1968 and then again in 1970 with the Lotus 72, and again in 1972 and 1973 with the Lotus 72. After which he might have followed Stewarts’ lead and retire from F1 while still relatively young; he would be 37. He would have 6 world titles by that point!! My guess is he may have turned to sports car racing or endurance racing, as it was in sports cars that he got his start back in the 50’s.

    Then again he may have stayed on a few more years and drove the Lotus 79 to another championship.

    Had the above scenario taken place there wouldn’t be any question at all as to the greatest, as Clark used his supreme skills and proper gentlemanly conduct to win. He never resorted to driving his competitors off the road as did Schumacher and Senna; and trust me, I am a huge Senna fan; but he did have his personality faults as did Schumacher.

    Jim Clark all the way!!

  38. I have a general question!

    Look at Clark’s picture, he’s just won a race and his this big Laurel Wreath around his neck, does anybody know why and when they stopped doing those??????????

    I’ve been googling away, but witout any luck….

    1. They still do it at Indy I think, but Im not sure when it was stopped in F1

  39. You know something nice about this? People like Clark, let alone Fangio, were before my time and I suspect that of most people on here. I’m 46, so my earliest memories are Stewart, Fittipaldi, etc. It’s great to see that memories are longer than I would have expected.

  40. Jim Clark was sublime, divine
    And the green and gold Lotus driven by Clark is the Vision Of Paradise

  41. In Italy they called Mansell “Il Leone” – he sure was a tough, fast guy.He would be the right one to race against Hamilton like two wild dogs going at each other.

  42. I was lucky enough to have seen Jimmy Clark race,in f1 sports and saloon cars and even then you knew you were witnessing something very special – no one comes near in my opinion and i was a ‘Nige’ fan too !

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