The Greatest Formula One Drivers Ever

Who is the greatest Formula One driver of all time? This definitive list covers not just who drove in the fastest car, but who was the most influential, history-altering driver that has ever graced the most demanding of sports. These are the best Formula One drivers ever, including the late, great Ayrton Senna, who died way too young under horrible circumstances. The sport is incredibly dangerous and the participants are incredibly brave. Fatal formula 1 car crashes are unfortunately common. Since Formula One's opening season in 1950 to the present decade an incredible array of talent has appeared, shone and even died in the hands of an F1 car. But, who is the best driver to ever race Formula One? Which Formula One racers do you love? 

Some of the legendary Formula One drivers include Michael Schumacher, Niki Lauda, and current Formula One star Lewis Hamilton. These Formula One champions have defined the sport for decades. Other Formula One greats like Juan Manuel Fangio, Alain Prost, and Sebastian Vettel deserve their champagne and roses as well. Where will Max Verstappen end up among the greats when all is said and done? 

Vote for the F1 driver you believe deserves the top spot, and vote down anyone you don't think should be listed. You can also re-rank this list in any order you want.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY
Ranked by
  • Michael Schumacher
    2,862 votes
    Hürth, Germany
    Michael Schumacher (born 3 January 1969) is a retired German racing driver who raced in Formula One for Jordan Grand Prix, Benetton and Ferrari, where he spent most of his career, as well as for ...more
  • Ayrton Senna
    3,091 votes
    Ayrton Senna da Silva (March 21, 1960 – May 1, 1994) was a Brazilian racing driver who won Formula One world championships for McLaren in 1988, 1990, and 1991, and who is widely regarded as one of ...more
  • Jim Clark
    1,554 votes
    Kilmany, United Kingdom
    James Clark Jr. OBE (4 March 1936 – 7 April 1968) was a British Formula One racing driver from Scotland, who won two World Championships, in 1963 and 1965. Clark was a versatile driver who competed ...more
  • Juan Manuel Fangio
    Juan Manuel Fangio (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈfanχjo], Italian pronunciation: [ˈfandʒo]; 24 June 1911 – 17 July 1995), nicknamed El Chueco ("the bowlegged one", also commonly translated as "bandy ...more
  • Alain Prost
    1,687 votes
    Alain Marie Pascal Prost OBE (born 24 February 1955) is a retired French racing driver and a four-time Formula One Drivers' Champion. From 1987 until 2001 Prost held the record for most Grand Prix ...more
  • Niki Lauda
    1,764 votes
    Vienna, Austria
    Andreas Nikolaus Lauda (22 February 1949 – 20 May 2019) was an Austrian Formula One driver, a three-time F1 World Drivers' Champion, winning in 1975, 1977 and 1984, and an aviation entrepreneur. He ...more