Rare Book Review: Driving to Perfection Ayrton Senna de Silva by R. Schlegelmilch & U.Berberich-Martini

driven to perfection book case
driven to perfection book case
driven to perfection book case


Title: Driving to Perfection - Ayrton Senna de Silva
Author: Rainer Schlegelmilch & Ulrich Berberich-Martini
Photography: R. Schlegelmilch
Year/Edition: 1994
# of pages: 96
Photos: Color
Cover: Hardcover with slipcase
Size: 30.5cm (w) x 41cm (d) x 2cm (thick)
Author: ,



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Posted May 2, 2015 by

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There aren’t too many F1 books that don’t easily sit on a standard size bookshelf. “Driving to Perfection – Ayrton Senna de Silva” by Rainer Schlegelmich and Ulrich Berberich-Martini is definitely one of them. At a colossal 41cm high, this heavy quality slipcase book is a trip down yesteryear both in terms of photos and lithograph production quality. They just don’t make these types of books anymore.

Released in 1994, this photo book was a tribute publication for collecters after Ayrton Senna’s death. At 96 pages, it’s a compilation of some of Schlegelmilch’s classic Senna photos.

Many of the photos are now also published in Schlegelmilch’s later books. So if you’re looking for a Schlegelmilch Senna photobook, nowadays you’ll be better off getting a copy of Rainer’s “50 Years of Formula 1 Photography” which contains many of the same photos (and is a massive photobook compilation to boot). This book is a more expensive one due to its limited print run and high quality paper and binding.

Gerhard Berger writes the foreword alongside Rainer’s and Ulrich’s introductions. Typical of Schlegelmilch books, the text is multilingual in English, German, Italian and Spanish.

The photo gallery includes a range of car & portrait shots (many of them capturing Senna’s various moods of intensity) but they are largely during his McLaren career. Photos of the Tolemann & Lotus are limited.

Wow Factor/Money Shot: When first released, it was the large format size, page quality and slipcase.

Suitable for: die-hard Senna collectors only.


driven to perfection book pages

Signed by Barichello & co…








driven to perfection book pages

Lots of McLaren Honda pics







driven to perfection book pages

Famous shots







driven to perfection book pages senna minichamps

This book is huge (comparison to 1:43 scale Senna Minichamps)!






    I currently have a copy of this book in very good condition all round. I bought it in 1994/5, so is a genuine 1st edition.
    It would be nice to know what the true value is to a collector of such items


      If you look on Amazon, copies of this book are usually priced around $US300. There are also several listings on ebay, one recently sold for £240.

    D Stott

    Does this book always have the signature page included? do you know if they are facsimilie or orginal? Thanks for your help. I have been offered one with some slight water damage. The person selling thinks it was a one off with signatures which it seems not. (he is genuine, not trying to con me just ignorant of facts). Thanks


      Hi, if you mean page 1 – my copy has the signature page (with Rubens & Jo Ramirez signatures) but they are reproduction as part of the book, not the original signatures.

        D Stott

        Yes that’s the one. Thank you so much for the information, I will look more closely, good production. Will buy the book as real Senna fan, appreciate your help. Thanks again.

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