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1989 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Date  13 August 1989
Course length  3.968 km (2.466 mi)
1989 Hungarian Grand Prix
Official name  V Pop 84 Magyar NagydĂ­j
Location  Hungaroring Budapest, Hungary
Course  Permanent racing facility
Distance  77 laps, 305.536 km (189.850 mi)

The 1989 Hungarian Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Hungaroring on 13 August 1989. It was the tenth race of the 1989 Formula One season.


Nigel Mansell won the race for Ferrari after a marvellous overtaking manoeuvre on Ayrton Senna as the two came upon a back-marker at the same time. It was his second victory for the Italian team.


Riccardo Patrese took a surprise pole position in his Williams, the first and only non-McLaren pole of the season, beating Senna by three-tenths of a second. In another surprise, Alex Caffi was just six-tenths behind Senna in third, the Pirelli tyres on his Dallara offering better grip than the Goodyears used by most of the top teams. Thierry Boutsen in the second Williams was fourth, ahead of the second McLaren of world championship leader Alain Prost in fifth. The top ten was completed by Gerhard Berger in the Ferrari, Alessandro Nannini in the Benetton, Stefano Modena in the Brabham, Derek Warwick in the Arrows and Pierluigi Martini in the Minardi.

Mansell, meanwhile, had a dismal qualifying and could only manage 12th, nearly seven-tenths behind team-mate Berger and over two seconds behind Patrese, and later complained of traffic.


At the start of the race, Patrese, Senna and Caffi maintained their grid order into turn 1, while Boutsen lost out to Prost as Berger passed both of them. Further back, Mansell made a good start, rising to 8th at the first corner. It soon became clear, however, that Caffi was struggling, the Dallara unable to replicate the speed it had shown in qualifying. Before long he had been passed by both Berger and Prost, and was holding up a train of cars consisting of Boutsen, Nannini, Mansell and Warwick.

Nannini exited the train when he pulled in to change tyres. This promoted Mansell to 7th, which he quickly turned into 5th by passing Boutsen and Caffi in quick succession. He then set about closing the 17-second gap to the leaders, and was promoted to 4th when Berger pitted for tyres. Having caught up to the leading group, Mansell passed Prost for 3rd. Patrese's Williams then began to develop a problem with a holed radiator, which slowed him and bunched up the leading group. Eventually, Patrese's holed radiator became so bad that both Senna and Mansell were able to pass him in the space of a few corners. Patrese retired from the race shortly afterwards.

Mansell now began to pressure Senna, clearly faster but unable to pass due to the extra power of the McLaren's Honda engine. Meanwhile, Prost pitted for tyres and rejoined 6th, while Berger only inherited 3rd briefly before he retired with gearbox problems, leaving Senna and Mansell on their own. Eventually, the pair came up to lap Stefan Johansson's Onyx. Senna caught him at an awkward moment, just at the accelerating zone out of turn 3. The Brazilian uncharacteristically hesitated, briefly lifting off, and this allowed Mansell to draw alongside as they went past Johansson and then use the Ferrari's greater momentum to surge past Senna and take the lead. After that, Mansell had an unchallenged run to the flag, beating Senna by nearly 26 seconds, with Boutsen completing the podium. Prost overtook Eddie Cheever's Arrows for 4th on the final lap, while Nelson Piquet's Lotus rounded off the points scorers.

Championship standings after the race

  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.
  • References

    1989 Hungarian Grand Prix Wikipedia

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