Ayrton Senna joined the team in 1988 to become World Champion for the first time as McLaren-Hondas won all-but one race. That was at the start of a fractious period within the team for team-mates Senna and Prost were consumed in one of the fiercest rivalries in F1 history. Again, film makers would preserve a part of McLaren history in the documentary Senna – a compelling portrayal of the Brazilian and that rivalry.
With Senna and Prost gone, McLaren suffered during the mid-1990s before securing Mercedes-Benz engines and luring designer Adrian Newey from Williams. Mika Häkkinen delivered back-to-back titles in 1998 and 1999 although the 1998 constructors’ title remains its most recent such success.
There was promise at the beginning of the new century but it was embroiled in the damaging “Spygate” affair in 2007. More positive that year was the introduction of McLaren protégé Lewis Hamilton. The Englishman only lost the 2007 title by a point and snatched the following year’s World Championship in the closing moments of the final race.