(Original post by super_dooper)
Why do you say that? Nigel Mansell was an amazing driver. He was blindingly quick. He was the one man besides Prost who was able to challenge, and beat, Senna. Mansell had guts and determination galore. He was a very flamboyant driver, he was ultra consistent in that he never had bad days and he hardly ever made mistakes.
Witness, for example, his win at Silverstone in 1987 where he had to pit due to a tyre vibration. He rejoined the track 30 seconds down on leader Nelson Piquet. He caught and passed Piquet, breaking the lap record numerous times, to take a magical win, to the delight of the British fans.
Mansell was every bit as good as Senna and Prost. He should've been champion at least 2 or 3 times, and it was just bad luck that robbed him of more titles. In 1986, for example, he was only a few laps from winning the title when his tyre blew and lost him the championship. In 1987, his unlucky crash at Suzuka took him out of the title race. He was, in truth, a 3 times world champion who only won the title once in F1 because of a bit of bad luck.
Races were never dull when he was in them. He could often come from behind to take the win, and he was an amazing overtaker. He was one driver who could really take the car by the scruff of its neck and drive consistently on the limit.
The fact that he went to Indycars in 1993 and crushed the opposition in his first season there proves all you need to know. And when he came back to F1 in 1994, he won after just 4 races at the age of 41. Not even Schumacher was able to do that.
Mansell also deserves his place so high up because he did not come from a rich background. Unlike Senna, Hamilton, etc....Mansell had NO MONEY and had to fight his way up the lower formulas and he even had to remortage his house and work lots of crappy jobs just to keep his motor racing career alive. He had so much determination, and he got into F1 based on his sheer talent alone.
What I also like about him is that he was not a glitzy or glamorous person....he was just a down-to-earth, feet-on-the-ground, family man.
Read his autobiography and watch some documentaries about him if you want to know more. In short, he's a very under-rated driver, definitely one of the all time best. And with 31 wins, he stands behind only Schumacher, Prost and Senna in the number of wins.