Yesterday Andreas Niklaus “Niki” Lauda passed away in his sleep at the age of 70, after a life of pole positions, accidents, airplanes, and victories.
His career started with difficulty: his parents were against his will to race and he went into debts to become a pilot. Despite this, he tried hard to pursue his dreams by beginning mountain racing in a Mini Cooper and continuing to take part in minor competitions until he managed to join Formula One. Since then, he won 25 races, 24 pole positions, and 420.5 points. He is the third pilot in history that won the most championships, winning in the years of 1975, 1977, and 1984..
Most people remember him for the terrible car accident he had in 1976 at the German Grand Prix, where his car crashed and bursted into flames leaving him with remarkable injuries. Nevertheless, he decided to get back on track after just six weeks, with the wounds still open, and ranked fourth. That season he arrived second, one point below his rival James Hunt; about his incredible comeback, a movie was shot in 2013, called Rush.
He drove several cars, but most people associate him with the two brands that led him to victory: Ferrari and McLaren. He has quit racing in 1985 and became an entrepreneur.
Amongst his many ventures, he founded and managed three airlines, the Lauda Air, Niki, and Laudamotion.
"A race isn’t won until it’s over!”
Niki Lauda in an interview in 2011
Niki Lauda was certainly one of the most influential racers ever, stubborn and full of willpower, he has always fought against his rivals, whether they were pilots or death, achieving great victories and flying high!
Thank you Niki for being an example and for the inspiration you gave us!