On the 20th of May, one of the greatest Formula 1 legends, passed away peacefully in Vienna.
This three times F1 World Drivers' Champion breathed his last at 70, nine months after undergoing a lung transplant. Andreas Nikolaus Lauda, aka, Niki Lauda, is not a just a legend but has proved himself to be a man of undying strength and courage.
It was in 1975 that he had won his first world championship title, but 1976 had other plans for him. During the German Grand Prix, Niki, met with a terrible accident on 1st August. On account of the track being damp, Niki lost control of his car and it went and hit straight on the banks by the track. Niki was pulled out of the car just in time and the car eventually burst into flames. Niki suffered damage to his lungs and sustained injuries to his head and people didn’t think that we would be able to make it. But his spirit of resilience had him back on the tracks in no time and went on to win two other World Championship titles.
Also fondly known as The Rat, Niki made a mark for himself outside the tracks as well. He became an aviation entrepreneur post retirement and continued with gusto whatever role he undertook.
John Watson, his Formula 1 partner, fondly remembers him as a man with a great sense of humor, who loved to laugh and made others laugh along with him too.
Niki Lauda was and continues to be one of the legends of the Grand Prix, even after his time.