Niki Lauda Mercedes (February 22, 1949 – May 20, 2019)
Formula One Championships: 1975, 1977 & 1984.
Lauda died in his sleep on 20 May 2019 in Vienna following a period of ill health, at the age of 70.
Part of Niki Lauda’s life was in a great 2013 movie called Rush, it was about the great rivalry between two F1 racers Niki Lauda & James Hunt. Niki Lauda was played by Daniel Brühl & James Hunt was played by Chris Hemsworth, Lauda & Hunt raced at a time when a Formula One racer had a one out of fifteen chance of surviving season. Niki Lauda made a cameo appearance at the end of the movie.
Lauda said “When I heard he’d died age 45 of a heart attack I wasn’t surprised, I was just sad. He was one of the very few I liked, a smaller number of people he respected and the only person I had envied.” If you have not seen the movie do yourself a favor & see it.
Formula 1 Statement:
Three-time Formula 1 world champion Niki Lauda has passed away, aged 70.
The Austrian, who had a lung transplant last August, won the F1 drivers’ championship in 1975 and 1977 with Ferrari and again in 1984 with McLaren.
In 1976 he staged one of the greatest sporting comebacks in history when, just six weeks after being badly injured in a fiery crash in Germany, he triumphantly returned to action, only narrowly missing out on that year’s drivers’ crown.
Following his racing career, Lauda returned to F1 in management roles, first with Ferrari, then with Jaguar and most recently with Mercedes, where he held the role of non-executive chairman as the Silver Arrows re-wrote the F1 record books.
“With deep sadness, we announce that our beloved Niki has peacefully passed away with his family on Monday,” his family said in a statement.
“His unique achievements as an athlete and entrepreneur are and will remain unforgettable, his tireless zest for action, his straightforwardness and his courage remain a role model and a benchmark for all of us.”
McLaren tweeted: “All at McLaren are deeply saddened to learn that our friend, colleague and 1984 Formula 1 World Champion, Niki Lauda, has passed away.
“Niki will forever be in our hearts and enshrined in our history.”