Elsewhere, what would be a torrid season for Ferrari kicked off with a double retirement for Jean Alesi and Ivan Capelli, while British fans cheered Johnny Herbert home to sixth place for Lotus – his best result for three years.
At the very bottom of the timesheets was Italian lady racer Giovanna Amati, who failed to make it in to the race after clocking a qualifying lap almost nine seconds slower than Mansell’s in her Brabham BT60B. She would persevere in Mexico and Brazil but fail to make it onto the starting grid of a World Championship Grand Prix, leaving Lella Lombardi’s milestone as the last woman to race at the top level – in Austria in 1976 – intact to this day.
South African Grand Prix, 1992
1. Nigel Mansell (GB) – Williams-Renault FW14B, 72 laps
2. Riccardo Patrese (ITA) – Williams-Renault FW14B, +24.360s
3. Ayrton Senna (BR) – McLaren-Honda MP4/6B, +34.675s
4. Michael Schumacher (D) – Benetton-Ford B191B, +47.863s
5. Gerhard Berger (AUT) – McLaren-Honda MP4/6B, +1m13.634s
6. Johnny Herbert (GB) – Lotus-Ford 102D, 71 laps
Images courtesy of LAT