Since 1985 Senna was driving for Lotus, winning his first GPs victories and pole positions. He was now considered as one of the best and his nickname "Magic" was already well deserved. Showing impressives skills and a speed rarely seen before him, Senna was the most sought after driver. His two years deal with Lotus was coming to an end at the end of the season and Senna was looking for his best option fo 87.
Ferrari, after a good 1985 season (where Michele Alboreto finished runner up behind new world champion Alain Prost on McLaren), was having a hell of a time in 86. No wins, no reliability and hardly any podium. Completely outclassed by the 3 big english team (McLaren, Williams and Lotus) something has to be done to put the "Reds" back on track again.
Just after the Belgian GP at Spa Francorchamps (a race that Senna won in 85) at the end of may, Senna, who had already won the Spanish GP earlier that season, was invited by Enzo Ferrari himself to come to Maranello to visit the Ferrari factory, the Scuderia headquarter and to have a personnal meeting with him.