Formula One Legend Niki Lauda Has Passed Away at 70

Lauda’s passion and energy transcended motorsports.

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Automotive
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Formula One icon, legend, and three-time world champion Niki Lauda has passed at the age of 70. Lauda’s family noted that the legendary driver and business entrepreneur had “passed away peacefully” on Monday. The famed driver passed away at a Swiss clinic, where had been attending dialysis treatment for various kidney issues.

Lauda was arguably one of the most legendary champions in all of driving sports, wherein he won two of his world championship titles after a brutal crash left him with immense burns. He won his 1975 and 1977 championships alongside Ferrari, making a staggering comeback in 1984 alongside McLaren to reclaim his title. The Austrian and his long-standing rivalry with British driver James Hunt was subject to Ron Howard’s critically-acclaimed biographical film Rush, which depicts the horrific accident Lauda suffered when his Ferrari burst into flames. Lauda was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1993.

He later returned to the race track via managerial and consulting roles in the early ‘90s, taking on the role of team principal for the Jaguar Formula One team in 2001. 2012 saw Lauda being appointed to non-executive chairman of the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team. 

Outside of racing, Lauda maintained a stark focus on Austria’s airline industry through starting his own airline, Lauda Air. After selling the airline in the late ‘90s, he later returned to the industry in 2003 with his new airline, Niki, once again selling to a majority stakeholder in the early 2010s. He continued his fascination in the automobile and aeronautics industries up until his death, and has maintained himself as one of the most respected to ever grace the motorsports industry.

Our condolences go out to the family and friends of Niki Lauda.

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