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Lauda's last race - did he crash on purpose?


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#1 Holy Driver

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 05:38

I know it´s a long time ago, but Marcel Schot´s article about Adelaide 1985 reminded me of a strange question that rose to my mind then, and maybe I´m not the only one to remember.

As he wrote:

As Lauda braked into the sharp righthander at the end of the Brabham Straight, his McLaren turned sharply left, ending the Austrian's long career in the wall

Lauda explained after the race that this turn left was not the direct result of his defect, instead he willingly steered his car into the wall because he had noticed his brake problems and wanted to stop his McLaren safely this way.

But - and here comes my point - I never believed him, and I´d like to give a reason for this: In various interviews he stated that he wanted to quit Formula 1. He had tried once before, but came back. He had a challenging offer for 1986 from Bernie Ecclestone with his revolutionary new ultra-flat Brabham. He said after the race (I´ll try to remember it as well as I can) that the qualifying result suited him well, since this bad result was a perfect way to get off F1 without much grief. But when he lead the race a few laps from the end he thought "Oh no, I like driving again." So when his defect came, this "was OK by him", because it was the way he was able to quit.

Combined with the strange way it looked (never saw anything else like this), I got the strong suspicion that he never really had a brake defect. He just drove his car safely into the wall to be able to get out of F1 (and, recalling what happened to poor Elio de Angelis in the flat Brabham, maybe this was not bad for him at all).

I´d just like to know if anyone else remembers and thought the same thing, has an opinion on this or has clue to prove or disprove it.

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#2 Holy Driver

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 05:39

I have posted this topic before in the "Reader´s Comments". Following an advice by Rainstorm and not being allowed to move it, I simply copied it into this forum.

#3 Don Capps

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 09:54

With Lauda, anything was possible....

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Yr fthfl & hmbl srvnt,

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#4 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 11:10

Sounds wierd, would he give up the title (he would have taken it if he'd won, wouldn't he?) for the sake of psychological pressures he should be able to manage. After all, his previous retirement was at the end of a downer year - to retire on top would surely have been easier?
Let's have more evidence - if there is any...

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#5 BRG

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 17:16

Sorry, don't believe it for a moment.

This is the guy who had the strength of character to get out of his car at Fuji and thereby surrender a WC. If he wanted to leave F1 in 1985, he just had to park the car. The idea that any racing driver, especially one who nearly lost his life in a crash, would willingly drive into the wall is bizarre.

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#6 Duane

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Posted 12 April 2000 - 18:38

It looked exactly like a brake failure to me. Not total brake failure, but possibly a shattered front disk or something causing the brake pedal pressure to momentarily lock the rears causing a spin, which would have put Lauda quickly into the outside wall - it all depended on the direction of the spin however. It was similar, but in the opposite direction, of the spin he had at the Nurburgring during the 84 Euro GP. Anyway, it had been a season of horrid unreliability for Lauda, and with only one win in 85 (the last GP at Zandvoort) I'm sure Lauda would have liked nothing better than to go out with a win. It was a typical race for Lauda late in his career, qualifying mid pack and working his way to the front with a combination of speed and taking care of his car, tires and fuel while others abused theirs.
I never heard that comment from lauda before, but I suspect it possibly has more to de with trying to scrub off speed against the wall instead of going straight off into the run off area.
The car however snapped left so quickly that I doubt it was an intentional move, it looked to me at the time that something broke.
Also, I agree with BRG, if Lauda wanted out right at the moment, he most probably would have just parked it and went home.

[This message has been edited by Duane (edited 04-12-2000).]

#7 Don Capps

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Posted 13 April 2000 - 09:00

....but, I doubt this is one of those possibilities. For Niki, winning was important. Besides, he had already committed himself to his airline and cut off staying in racing. No doubt such thoughts crossed his mind, but dear Nikolaus was not one to do something to blot the spreadsheets...

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#8 Falcadore

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Posted 13 April 2000 - 20:46

Ray,
Lauda had a shocking year with reliability in 1985. The title was a long way from being witihn reach.

#9 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 April 2000 - 21:49

Sorry - my memory of that race was that there was title contenders falling over like flies... or am I confusing it with 86? They were the only two years I went to Adelaide.

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#10 rallen

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 19:46

Very interesting thread I found by accident, is there a clip of this somewhere I can see to make a judgement myself? Can anyone else fill me in on what his driving was like in 1985? I know he had bad reliability but how were his performances?

#11 PCC

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 23:20

Sorry, don't believe it for a moment.

The idea that any racing driver... would willingly drive into the wall is bizarre.

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Ah, we were all so innocent back in the year 2000.

#12 rallen

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 23:24

Ah, we were all so innocent back in the year 2000.


LOL! apart from Nelson Jr, have there been any other examples, sinister or not of drivers crashing? (please lets ignore Schumacher from this thread or it will get hijacked!) there has certainly been implied incidents over the years.

#13 Jones Foyer

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 23:53

What was preventing him from just walking away after the race? Why did he have to crash out mid-race to justify retirement?

Looks like the entire race is posted here, by the way.



(Divided into 12 parts)

Edited by Jones Foyer, 08 January 2010 - 23:54.


#14 Rob

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 00:01

LOL! apart from Nelson Jr, have there been any other examples, sinister or not of drivers crashing? (please lets ignore Schumacher from this thread or it will get hijacked!) there has certainly been implied incidents over the years.


Not a crash per se, but still with intent.

When we had the two one-lap sessions in 2003, the two Ferraris spun deliberately in the first session so they could go first in the second session. Of course, rain was predicted to arrive mid-way through said second session.

#15 stuartbrs

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 00:02

It was a brake failure. The front brake just disintegrated. It happened right in front of where we were sitting.

Edited by stuartbrs, 09 January 2010 - 00:03.


#16 Wirra

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 00:06

While I don't recall seeing the initial impact I remember the car's deceleration along the wall. It was a very 'calm' incident, but isn't that how great drivers respond in such situations. There were many slower and much safer places around the track if a driver intended to deliberately DNF. Every time I watched at that corner I was reminded of Clay Reggazoni's crash at Long Beach and perhaps Lauda was thinking the same thing - glancing a wall is better than hitting one head-on.

I only now realise that these photos show Lauda actually exiting F1.
Posted Image

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Edited by Wirra, 09 January 2010 - 00:09.


#17 Jones Foyer

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 00:55

It was a brake failure. The front brake just disintegrated. It happened right in front of where we were sitting.

\

Well there you go. I'd call that question wrapped up. Only took 10 years since the beginning of the thread.

:lol:


#18 Thundersport

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 01:02

What a stupid thread clearly brake failure why even question it? I wish these morons would stop questioning history that doesn't neccesitate it with chavvy conspiricy theories etc.

Edited by Thundersport, 09 January 2010 - 12:48.


#19 Louis Mr. F1

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 03:28

While I don't recall seeing the initial impact I remember the car's deceleration along the wall. It was a very 'calm' incident, but isn't that how great drivers respond in such situations. There were many slower and much safer places around the track if a driver intended to deliberately DNF. Every time I watched at that corner I was reminded of Clay Reggazoni's crash at Long Beach and perhaps Lauda was thinking the same thing - glancing a wall is better than hitting one head-on.

I only now realise that these photos show Lauda actually exiting F1.
Posted Image


Wirra - Great Photos - thank you so much for posting them :clap: :clap: :clap:


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#20 CSquared

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 05:23

Wirra - Great Photos - thank you so much for posting them :clap: :clap: :clap:

:up: Fantastic photos.
As for the original post, if it hasn't been thoroughly enough reviled yet, I'll quote Bill Gates and say that it's "the stupidest f#@!ing thing I've ever heard." Like others have said, this is the guy who calmly drove into the pits to surrender a title and who quit Ferrari in 1977 with two races left in the season. Lauda is not the type who ever felt he needed an excuse.

#21 Wirra

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 08:24

As per Louis Mr.F1's PM request here are images of Rosberg and Senna that weekend - sorry, none of their duel (can't even recall it personally). Also one I dare say Martin Brundle would like to forget.
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Posted Image

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I have images of most cars that weekend so if you care to PM your e-mail address I'll get them scanned and forwarded to you.

Just so this post is somewhat on topic the image of Senna was taken as he returns to the track where Lauda would have gone. Also IIRC Mansell very nearly reached the end of that escape road the following year when his tyre burst. Lauda's emergency technique all the more praiseworthy.

Edited by Wirra, 09 January 2010 - 08:31.


#22 Ray Bell

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 12:10

Originally posted by Thundersport
What a stupid thread clearly brake failure why even question it? I wish these morons would stop questioning history that doesn't neccesitate it with chavvy conspiricy theories etc. I doubt the **** was even born in 1985.


Probably was, or he'd have only been 15 when he started the thread...

All the same, that kind of attitude was never in vogue when the thread was posted, why make it so nasty now?

#23 rallen

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 12:32

Wirra - Great Photos - thank you so much for posting them :clap: :clap: :clap:


I agree, brilliant photos, thanks for posting!

#24 rallen

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 12:35

What a stupid thread clearly brake failure why even question it? I wish these morons would stop questioning history that doesn't neccesitate it with chavvy conspiricy theories etc. I doubt the **** was even born in 1985............


I think this comment is a bit out of order, the original poster gave a well thought out and civil reason for their theory/hunch - not just a wild, hysterical comment. It was an interesting question that got an interesting set of responses and views of one of the great drivers. Weather you agree with it or not you are just being offensive.

#25 Thundersport

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 12:49

Fair comment I have removed the offencive remark.

#26 JtP1

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 15:11

Considering the amount of effort Lauda put into winning Zandvoort. There was no way a faster Prost was getting past without being introduced to the Armco. Why he would have deliberatly wasted another win, especially in his last race. Did Prost not also retire with brake failure in the same race?

#27 B Squared

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 15:17

Did Prost not also retire with brake failure in the same race?


My Automobile Year #33 shows Prost retiring from third place on lap 26 with "engine". B²

Edited by B Squared, 09 January 2010 - 15:18.


#28 Louis Mr. F1

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 15:19

Considering the amount of effort Lauda put into winning Zandvoort. There was no way a faster Prost was getting past without being introduced to the Armco. Why he would have deliberatly wasted another win, especially in his last race. Did Prost not also retire with brake failure in the same race?


Agreed, Lauda put up a very good fight until the end.

Prost's retirement was caused by engine failure.

#29 Formula Once

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 16:26

Mind you, Lauda could/would have won that race. He admitted being pretty confused by it all (finding himself in a position to win) having already decided to quit. At the same time Bernie was offering him an astronomic sum of money to drive the radical BT55 and Niki was intrigued by both the money and the car (little did he know...). Anyway, he said that ultimately he was happy that his brakes failed, causing the car to turn left into the wall along which he scraped until it stopped. It ended the confusion in his head and made him stick to his plan and turn Bernie's offer down. To answer your question: no intent to the cause, but the consequences were a bit more significant than just a race lost.

As for his speed in 1985: in 1984 Prost was of course generally faster, which triggered Lauda so much that it even made him feel slightly uncomfortable. Basicly, he had to drive harder and faster then he had expected to, having the car to beat. The extra motivation he sensed was caused by the fact that he had worked all year (in 1983) to turn the Porsche-powered McLaren into a contender and now that it seemed to be dominant (which he knew it would have to be for him to fight and beat the newest generation of drivers) he was unexpectedly put up with what was arguably the best driver of that time as his team mate (Prost having been fired by Renault after all the top teams had their drivers signed). Not only was Prost fast(er), he also came cheap (as he had nowhere else to go) which made him Dennis' darling instantly, Ron being pretty sick about the salary Lauda had managed to demand from the team i.e. Marlboro and also the fact the Austrian was so popular. In 1984, Lauda made up for his lack of qualifying speed on Sundays and stayed in the title hunt which only spurred him on even more. He drove some pretty sensational races that year despite not always starting from the front. I think what then affected him in 1985 were three things: a) having won the title the year before, b) being even less happy at McLaren (he was no friend of Dennis and also had to accept a major salary cut after his move to Renault was axed because the French pulled out) and c) his early season was ruined by a number of mechanical trouble, what must have reduced whatever was left of his motivation by the. Mind you, I am sure that in the end he coukd/would have been a championship contender again that year had he finished more races, especially in the first half of the season, for in the races again he often performed well. Zandvoort, I think, was magic, a great race (despite being given the wrong tyres during his pit stop) which proved he had lost none of the speed he had demonstrated after coming back in 1982, which was different then in the day before August 1, 1976, but impressive (and fast enough) still.

Edited by Formula Once, 09 January 2010 - 16:28.


#30 rallen

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 19:49

Mind you, Lauda could/would have won that race. He admitted being pretty confused by it all ...


Wow brilliant, thanks for the post Formula Once I really appreciate that. It is always great to lean something more about the rich history of this sport! can you tell me what would have happend if he had wanted to continue with McLaren? would Ron have allowed that or were his bridges well and truely burnt there? I wonder if he had the drive and ambition, how long Lauda could have stayed in F1?

#31 Louis Mr. F1

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 20:18

My understanding is at least Brabham and the new Beatrice team had made an offer to Lauda for the 86 season but he had turned both down.

Bernie (& Olivetti/Pirelli) had just lost Piquet to Williams team, they needed a big name to keep the sponsors happy, so he offered Lauda $6 million - the highest offer ever - Lauda said that at one moment, he would have accepted it had Bernie approached him, that was during the South African GP weekend (the first race after his wrist injury absence) because suddenly he was enjoying his driving and was driving well. But of course Bernie didn't know that and when he eventually asked for an answer about the offer, Lauda's enthusiasm had subsided and his rationale mind took over to stick to his original retirement plan.

The new Beatrice Lola team had a lot of ambitions, they got the 1980 world champion Alan Jones as one of their drivers, they (thought they) had a lot of money and were only interested in big name drivers, they approached Piquet / Rosberg / Lauda - but because they all got other plans/arrangements - retirement for Lauda and driving for a brand new team probably didn't interest him that much - so the Beatrice team eventually settled down with Tambay.

Lauda was also a Marlboro man, (they listened to what he said and bended to his demands) I'd say he'd have had a pretty good chance of staying at McLaren if he'd liked to, but his relationship with Ron Dennis had deteriorated so much that I doubt he'd choose to live with Ron for another year. If he wanted to stay at McLaren for 86, I think Marlboro would have made a place for him, albeit at a reduced salary, probably 1/2 of what he earned in 84 (he got 3/4 of that in 1985 as the defending world champion), just my opinion.

Edited by Louis Mr. F1, 09 January 2010 - 20:21.


#32 Formula Once

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 23:06

A bit more info that may be helpful. Lauda agreed terms with Renault in August 1984, including that the contract was to be officially signed after the final race of the season as Niki did not want the fact that he would leave the team to affect his title fight with Prost i.e. did not want McLaren to have a reason to favour Prost. By the Austrian GP Dennis told Lauda that he would have to accept a 50% pay cut for 1985 or he'd sign Rosberg. Lauda told him to get Rosberg if he wished. At the beginning of September Renault told Lauda that they could not respect their agreement as they had to lay off a lot of people and politically could not afford to sign an expensive F1-driver at the same time. That's when Lauda met with the Marlboro-people and squeezed a bit of extra money out of them/McLaren albeit one third less than his 1984 salary. A new contract was signed just before the 1984 Nurburgring race. A year later, just before the same race, Lauda told Dennis he would retire, a week later McLaren signed Rosberg and in Austria Niki publicly announced he would retire at the end of the year. He then won the next race in Holland. There was never a discussion between Lauda and McLaren about 1986 as far as I know. Upon arriving at Kyalami for practice and wondering through the pit lane Niki indeed (as Louis wrote) felt he would miss racing and feared he had made a mistake to retire. Then he beat Prost in qualifying and later said "If only Bernie had chosen to come up and be nice and friendly at that moment, I would have signed for another season on the spot" (see To Hell and Back). Bernie only got back in touch when everyone was back in Europe and by then Lauda said "the magic and excitement of Kyalami was gone" He also states in that book that while moving up through the field at Adelaide he got excited once more about the whole feeling "and things started to look serious ägain for a moment" until the brakes failed. In the book there is no mentioning of Beatrice, but I am sure he could have been on their list.

#33 GD66

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 07:09

[quote name='' date='Apr 13 2000, 13:49' post='20463']
Sorry - my memory of that race was that there was title contenders falling over like flies... or am I confusing it with 86? They were the only two years I went to Adelaide.

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Life and love are mixed with pain..(quote)

Yeah, that one with all the permutations was '86, Ray. Hope you haven't been sweating on the answer... :lol:


#34 aditya-now

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 18:57

What was preventing him from just walking away after the race? Why did he have to crash out mid-race to justify retirement?

Looks like the entire race is posted here, by the way.



(Divided into 12 parts)


Thanks for providing that link, I just watched the race! Nice comments by James Hunt as always!

You could easily see the mature mastery of Lauda at this race in many aspects, the exuberance and still excellence of the young Senna and the wonderful and powerful turbo cars. Magnificent year!

And no, Lauda was surely not crashing on purpose, I am an Austrian and we grew up with Lauda on radio and TV, him being one of the greatest national figures and "gurus" - crashing on purpose would have been totally out of character for Lauda....

Adelaide 1985 provided a wonderful junction point between the last race of the Lauda era, and the ascendence of Senna, who would interlink with Schumacher in the early nineties, which leads us up till 2010.
Picking up on that train of thought, Lauda was already racing with Jackie Stewart, and Stewart with Jack Brabham. Did Brabham race Fangio (and was Fangio racing from 1950 onwards?). In other words, how many "generations" between 1950 and now - if we count back from Schumacher on Senna (or Prost, for that matter) on Lauda on Stewart (or Graham Hill for that matter) on....who till the beginning of the WDC in 1950?

It seems to me it´s only 5 or 6 "generations" these 60 years of F1 racing.

#35 D-Type

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 19:18

~
Picking up on that train of thought, Lauda was already racing with Jackie Stewart, and Stewart with Jack Brabham. Did Brabham race Fangio (and was Fangio racing from 1950 onwards?). In other words, how many "generations" between 1950 and now - if we count back from Schumacher on Senna (or Prost, for that matter) on Lauda on Stewart (or Graham Hill for that matter) on....who till the beginning of the WDC in 1950?

It seems to me it´s only 5 or 6 "generations" these 60 years of F1 racing.

You'll enjoy this thread then.

#36 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 20:30

To come back to the initial question: No, Niki did not crash on purpose. Yet in the press he stated several things which goes down as plainly Niki's sense of humor.
The season was full of technical problems. Already by Monaco did Niki start to doubt his presence in F1. I think it was there and then that he decided to quit, but forced himself to focus, which he did.

The practice of the Aussie GP was (again) full of technical issues for Niki that it was just as 1985 had to be for him. Therefor he made comments in the press that practice ran according to plan, taking the mickey out of it.
In the race Niki had 'stormed' to the first position as many others had worn their tyres or flat spotted them and had to pit. Niki also overtook several: Brundle, Patrese, Warwick and Johansson. The lead was 'given' to him by Rosberg, who had to make a second pitstop quickly after his first due to his tyres AND by overtaking Senna. Niki always stated that he was so surprised to be in the lead and couldn't believe it. He did however (as usual) go for the win. But was happy to crash out. Happy as he was quite frustrated of the whole season (Zandvoort excepted).

Niki did earn the first spot thank to some (top) drivers dropping out or by pitstops. But he himself did preserve his tyres that he did not need to pit.

Niki was again more interested in his airplane business and eager to be in full control. Also some nice business proposals came by at that time.

#37 aditya-now

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 23:39

You'll enjoy this thread then.


Wow, thanks for the link, D-Type!!! :wave:

To Arjan: thanks for reminding us of Niki´s brand of humor, very lovely. Yes, indeed, Adelaide 85 was marvelous, a great race to watch, full of excitement from lap 1 to the last lap. We rarely get such races in years. And Lauda´s cool mastery was outstanding for one last time.

After he played big with Lauda Air and was a pain in the neck for the national career Austrian Airlines, they crushed him with political power and bought up Lauda Air, but then tricky Niki just started Fly Niki, in alliance with Air Berlin.
Nowadays on Vienna Airport you have Fly Niki planes standing next to Lauda Air planes, it´s funny to read his first and last name spread across the whole airfield.

Definitely another unique achievement. He lives on one kidney of his brother and one kidney of a girlfriend, can you imagine, otherwise he would not be among us anymore!

And one of this latest stints is that he started a car rental called Lauda Motion, renting Smarts for 1 € a day in Austrian cities as well as Munich !!! Extremely popular car rental, as you can imagine. Not bad for a "rat".

More illustrious than maybe any other ex-F1 driver. Maybe except for Carlos Reutemann, who might still become Argentinian president...


#38 CSquared

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 00:42

...
More illustrious than maybe any other ex-F1 driver. Maybe except for Carlos Reutemann, who might still become Argentinian president...

I didn't know about the car rental venture. I wish Lauda would do another book, filling us in on all these adventures (and that tragic plane explosion, the stint at Jaguar F1, etc) since 1985/6 (when he did Meine Story/To Hell and Back).

#39 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 01:42

Yes, I'll second that motion...

And back a bit closer to the topic, I remember on the day thinking how great it was that Niki was going to win his last race... just before he had his problem with the brake and the wall.

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#40 ghinzani

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:09

Lauda hasnt got his own kidneys? Is that anything to do with the after effects of his Nurburgring crash? I think he still smokes like a train though, you would think having other peoples kidneys he might want to extend the life of the body they are in. And whats this plane exploding business? I met his kid who raced at a party once, nice lad but too much of a party animal for a proper racing career these days methinks.

#41 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:16

I didn't know about the car rental venture. I wish Lauda would do another book, filling us in on all these adventures (and that tragic plane explosion, the stint at Jaguar F1, etc) since 1985/6 (when he did Meine Story/To Hell and Back).

There is a autobiography in Dutch called "My third live" and mostly recounts his journey after F1. Including the whole story of Lauda Air. It was co-written by Herbert Volker and originally appeared in German (Das dritte Leben, ISBN-13: 978-3453138803). I liked his explanations on managing a company.

A latest addition is "Niki Lauda, alles unter eine Kappe" (all under one cap) by Thomas Mudri. However only in German I presume. It includes even more recent information on his career and private life.




#42 ReWind

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:37

Lauda hasnt got his own kidneys?

In fact he has! But he also has additional ones.
Look at three posts of mine from 29 October 2008 hidden in another thread.


#43 Tim Murray

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:45

And whats this plane exploding business?

http://en.wikipedia...._Air_Flight_004

#44 CSquared

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:50

There is a autobiography in Dutch called "My third live" and mostly recounts his journey after F1. Including the whole story of Lauda Air. It was co-written by Herbert Volker and originally appeared in German (Das dritte Leben, ISBN-13: 978-3453138803). I liked his explanations on managing a company.

A latest addition is "Niki Lauda, alles unter eine Kappe" (all under one cap) by Thomas Mudri. However only in German I presume. It includes even more recent information on his career and private life.


I'm embarrassed that I didn't know about "My Third Life." After some quick web searches it looks like maybe it wasn't ever published in English? I'll have to look around more.
The second, it seems, isn't autobiographical, but it has better reviews on Amazon.de than "Das dritte Leben." :)
Thanks for the info!

#45 CSquared

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:53

And whats this plane exploding business?


http://en.wikipedia...._Air_Flight_004

Edit: Didn't see that Tim Murray had already replied. Well done. :wave:

Edited by CSquared, 11 January 2010 - 09:24.


#46 Formula Once

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 08:58

My Third Life - a VERY interesting book, the best by any racing driver in my opinion as it goes way beyond the racing stuff. Lauda's other books Protokoll and To Hell and Back are highly recomandable, too.

#47 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 09:51

There are more books on Niki and quite some interesting too. One of my first books was: "Formel 1, Technik und Praxis des Grand-Prix-Sports". It explained pretty much the technique behind the cars of the day (1974-1975), racing techniques, testing and life as a racing driver. Quite a good introduction to F1.

"Protokoll, Meine Jahre mit Ferrari (my years with Ferrari)" is THE read on his career at Ferrari, the accident, Fuji and 1977.

"Die neue Formel 1, Das Turbo-Zeitalter" (The Turbo years) was the third book in what was (incorrectly) called the Lauda-trilogy series with Herbert Volker. This book explains the turbo cars and tried to better his first book. Disappointed a little.

Then we got:
"Meine Story (To hell and back)" with Volker again.
"Niki Lauda, Reportage einer Karriere" by Helmut Zwickl.
"Niki Lauda, Ein Lebensbild" by Peter Lanz.
"Niki Lauda, Der Weg zum Triumph (The road to triumph) again Peter Lanz.
"Ich pfeif' auf Österreich, Tricky Nikis Heimniederlage" could be called an attack on Niki's character or at least a critical view on his business dealings. "Why did he move to London?" Was written without any interview with Niki, but allegedly with some people close to the Lauda Air business. At the time Niki threatened to go to court. Also contains some idiot observations.
"Die Wüste lebt!: Der Tag an dem Niki Lauda starb (The dessert lives: the day Niki died)" a satire with some grimm humor. The author wakes up one morning and hears the radio state that Niki Lauda has died. Then he recounts on what all will happen in Austria: Heinz Pruller crying on TV, flower beds at the Fly Niki offices. A piece of dark humor that may entertain some Austrians but surely also Niki.

Edited by Arjan de Roos, 11 January 2010 - 09:53.


#48 Tim Murray

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 10:12

http://en.wikipedia...._Air_Flight_004

Edit: Didn't see that Tim Murray had already replied. Well done. :wave:

No probs, thanks C2 :up:

#49 aditya-now

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 00:10

......"Die Wüste lebt!: Der Tag an dem Niki Lauda starb (The dessert lives: the day Niki died)" a satire with some grimm humor. The author wakes up one morning and hears the radio state that Niki Lauda has died. Then he recounts on what all will happen in Austria: Heinz Pruller crying on TV, flower beds at the Fly Niki offices. A piece of dark humor that may entertain some Austrians but surely also Niki.



Wow, Arjan, thanks, never was aware of that book! One can imagine Heinz Prüller dying with grief! :lol:

#50 rallen

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 09:56

Lauda hasnt got his own kidneys? Is that anything to do with the after effects of his Nurburgring crash? I think he still smokes like a train though, you would think having other peoples kidneys he might want to extend the life of the body they are in. And whats this plane exploding business? I met his kid who raced at a party once, nice lad but too much of a party animal for a proper racing career these days methinks.


I didn't know he didn't have his own kidneys, I remember being surprised when he reached 60, I assumed that after his accident in 76, all the fumes and chemicals he has inhaled would come back in the form of cancer or serious illness later in life, it seems remarkable that his body can go through all that and still be fine when you consider that people who have been through a lot less perish from cancer in their 40's and 50's. I would have though after 1976 you would have said James Hunt would outlast Niki! But it is very disappointing if he smokes whilst having someone else's kidneys?! I feel quite let down by that! esp now he is a new dad again as well!