The Art of Racing in the Rain

The Art of Racing in the Rain

Ayrton Senna Symbol Icon

Senna is Enzo's favorite driver, who died tragically and mysteriously during a race in 1995. Enzo says that Senna was charismatic and daring, and Senna is often conflated with Denny. Both Senna and Denny are exceptional drivers in the rain, which speaks to their intellectual capabilities and unflappable attitudes. Despite this conflation with Denny, however, Enzo remarks that he himself is often more like Senna than Denny is, as Enzo wants to be more spontaneous and carefree than Denny often is willing to be. Senna provides Enzo with something to idolize and look up to and is a huge player in Enzo's conception of spirituality, as he acts like a positive counterpoint for the evil of the zebra. Senna's persona also informs Enzo's idea of what he'd like to be when he's finally human.

Ayrton Senna Quotes in The Art of Racing in the Rain

The The Art of Racing in the Rain quotes below all refer to the symbol of Ayrton Senna. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
What It Means to Be Human Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the HarperCollins edition of The Art of Racing in the Rain published in 2009.
Chapter 1 Quotes

After the 1993 Grand Prix, the best thing I've ever seen on TV is a documentary that explained everything to me, made it all clear, told the whole truth: when a dog is finished living his lifetimes as a dog, his next incarnation will be as a man.

Related Characters: Enzo (speaker)
Related Symbols: Television, Ayrton Senna
Page Number: 2
Explanation and Analysis:

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Chapter 30 Quotes

Racing is about discipline and intelligence, not about who has the heavier foot. The one who drives smart will always win in the end.

Related Characters: Enzo (speaker), Denny
Related Symbols: Ayrton Senna
Page Number: 178
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 47 Quotes

He died that day because his body had served its purpose. His soul had done what it came to do, learned what it came to learn, and then was free to leave. And I knew, as Denny sped me toward the doctor who would fix me, that if I had already accomplished what I set out to accomplish here on earth, if I had already learned what I was meant to learn, I would have left the curb one second later than I had, and I would have been killed instantly by that car.

Related Characters: Enzo (speaker), Denny
Related Symbols: Ayrton Senna
Page Number: 257
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 49 Quotes

When it rained, it never rained on Senna.

Related Characters: Enzo (speaker)
Related Symbols: Rain, Ayrton Senna
Page Number: 268
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Ayrton Senna Symbol Timeline in The Art of Racing in the Rain

The timeline below shows where the symbol Ayrton Senna appears in The Art of Racing in the Rain. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
What It Means to Be Human Theme Icon
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Illness and Death Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...saw on television, he says, was the 1993 Grand Prix of Europe, in which Ayrton Senna drove like a genius in the rain. Enzo continues, saying that he's always felt almost... (full context)
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Love and Family Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...affect him at all, just like the 1993 Grand Prix of Europe, in which Ayrton Senna passed four champion cars on the first lap like he was magic. (full context)
Love and Family Theme Icon
Illness and Death Theme Icon
Enzo says that Denny is as good as Senna, but nobody notices Denny because he has responsibilities: his daughter, Zoë, and Enzo, and until... (full context)
Chapter 25
What It Means to Be Human Theme Icon
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...driver, but not a fan favorite because he's remote and unapproachable, unlike the charismatic Ayrton Senna. Similarly, nobody applauds the sun just for rising, since it hasn't overcome adversity to do... (full context)
Chapter 38
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Love and Family Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...drivers, who never took unnecessary risks. Enzo, in contrast, says he'd like to be like Senna and pack their things, pick up Zoë unannounced from school, and escape to Canada. (full context)
Chapter 47
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Illness and Death Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...car on the way to the vet that night, it occurs to him that Ayrton Senna didn't have to die; he could've walked away. He tells the reader that the day... (full context)
What It Means to Be Human Theme Icon
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Illness and Death Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
In the extremely dangerous Tamburello corner, Senna's car left the track at 190mph and he was killed instantly when suspension pierced his... (full context)
Chapter 49
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Love and Family Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...on one of Enzo's favorite races, the 1984 Grand Prix of Monaco, in which Ayrton Senna drives in the rain. Enzo tells the reader that Senna would've won, but they canceled... (full context)
Chapter 58
Love and Family Theme Icon
Illness and Death Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...Denny will experience success on the track and become a Formula One driver like Ayrton Senna. Enzo says he'd like to see this happen, but his soul has learned what it... (full context)
Imola, Italy
What It Means to Be Human Theme Icon
Language and Storytelling Theme Icon
Destiny and Spirituality Theme Icon
...man thanks Denny profusely and tells him that Enzo says that Denny is better than Senna. Denny ruffles the boy's hair and says he's a racer at heart. Enzo says, in... (full context)