But visibility could be a serious concern at the night grand prix, held under floodlights on a narrow and bumpy street circuit which snakes past downtown Singapore landmarks.
Forty-one is still far from being an outright record – Michael Schumacher is out on his own on 91 wins ahead of Alain Prost (51), while Sebastian Vettel also boasts Senna’s 41.
Despite race auto driving no doubt being his main focus right now, Lewis also shared some of his music with his army of fans this week.
“After the last race I was only notified how many races I had done and to see that nearly correlated with the career that Ayrton had had”.
That’s a win rate of 25%, although Senna’s 41st win actually came on his 158th start in the Australian GP at the close of the 1993 season, three races and six months before he lost his life aged just 34 in a crash at Imola.
“As a kid it was my ambition to emulate Ayrton”, said Hamilton in the Singapore paddock as he prepared for one of the toughest races of the year.
Last season, the title race ended up going all the way to the final round in Abu Dhabi as Hamilton’s reliability issues allowed Rosberg to remain within striking distance despite winning seven fewer grands prix. The Mercedes driver is in the prime of his racing career, and he recently welcomed the birth of his daughter with wife Vivian Sibold.
But, while his title prospects may appear as hazy as the smog that has blanketed Singapore in the build up to Sunday’s race, he has refused to throw in the towel. “There’s still seven races to go, lots of points, so keep pushing. But if I was to equal Ayrton’s number of wins, even this weekend, it would be very emotional”.
Lewis Hamilton has expressed his disappointment at the changes made to the layout of the Marina Bay Circuit in Singapore. “Any small slip and you’re in the barrier, so maintaining that total concentration is crucial”.
The tight, twisty nature of the track and the potential for attrition could give teams lower down the grid the chance to shine.
With Ferrari thriving in the hot conditions, and the nimble but power-light Red Bull performing well on the slow corners at the Marina Bay street circuit, those teams look capable of ending Mercedes’ long monopoly of pole positions.
Judging by the form they showed in Friday practice, both certainly seemed more competitive than usual.
Remarkably, not only did Vettel claim pole by half a second from Daniel Ricciardo with his Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen a further two tenths adrift, but he beat the fifth-placed Lewis Hamilton, chasing a record-equalling eighth consecutive pole in F1, by over 1.4 seconds.