Published on May 21st, 2019 | by Subhash Nair
Motorsport Legend Niki Lauda Passes at Age 70
Today is a sad day indeed. Austrian motorsport legend Niki Lauda has passed away in his sleep in Vienna after being ill for some time.
Lauda cemented his name in motorsport history in the 1970s, winning several races with Ferrari (including his first World Championship) in the early part of the decade before his horrifying crash of 1976 at the Nurburgring. Despite being badly burnt in the accident, he pulled himself back into championship just 2 races later. This episode of his life was depicted in the film Rush.
He went on to finish the Italian GP fourth before his burns could fully heal. In 1977, he got his 2nd World Championship win.
He then quit Ferrari, and after a brief stint with Brabham-Alfa Romeo, retired from the sport to run his own chartered airline, Lauda Air.
Niki Lauda then returned to Formula 1 in 1982, taking win after win with McLaren. He and Alain Prost went on to be a formidable duo until the mid 1980s. With McLaren, Lauda secured his third world championship win during the 1984 season.
Niki Lauda has since returned to Formula 1 in managerial and consulting roles. First with Ferrari in 1993, then with Jaguar in 2001. He final role was with the successful Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team. He joined in 2012 and had been working with Toto Wolff.
The man was undeniably one of the greatest in the business.