Satoru Nakajima_1

Satoru Nakajima, posing with my son Mathias.

The first Japanese driver to become a Formula 1 regular, Nakajima's inclusion in the second works Lotus alongside Ayrton Senna in 1987 was part of the deal which gained the Hethel team access to Honda engines. He stayed with Lotus until the end of 1989, then switched to Tyrrell for two seasons - again paid for by Honda - until deciding to retire. A pleasant and popular man who never made any waves, he was a good test driver and not at all disgraced by some of his performances - notably he gained a fourth place in the saturated 1989 Australian Grand Prix at the wheel of a Lotus-Judd. He later ran a series of race teams in Japan, helping young drivers towards F1.