I'm going to throw in an alternative to Lauda at Monza. Sure, it was abnormally brave to come back in such circumstances, but he wasn't the only one who did so.
Look at this.
It's all that was left of an Osella after Piercarlo Ghinzani crashed it at the Jukskei Sweep at Kyalami in 1984.
Three weeks later he was driving at the very next race. Despite some serious burns. For the next few races, he would creep behind the pits, when he thought nobody was watching, and pull dead skin away.
There has never been a driver so willing and desperate to claw onto a Formula 1 drive as Ghinzani. He won two F3 championships to earn his superlicence. And the first chance he got was the Dywa, an hideously dangerous thing that he hustled around Monza in an Aurora practice session, to the fear and marvel of everyone watching.
One thing he was brilliant at was getting sponsorship. He got sponsors that stayed loyal to him for a decade of back-of-grid-ism. Including a weightlifting equipment manufacturer. Which was a spectacular bit of salesmanship as the heaviest thing Peter Charles lifted was a cigarette. But he was not unfit - he was a sportscar stalwart and even won two world championship rounds.
But his great drive was when he was still recovering. Dallas 1984.
Now that was a circuit. A fast street circuit. With wet tarmac. They had laid it too recently to do any good. And some brains trust decided to hold the race in the height of summer, with the track temps heading into the sort of figures that make Death Valley look like the Bering Straits. Some drivers were smart; Corrado Fabi and Ghinzani both silvered their helmets to reflect some of the heat. The smartest, for once, was not Lauda, but Keke Rosberg, who got a liquid-cooled skullcap to keep him reasonable.
So. Street circuit. Walls. Breaking up track. Murderous heat. It was only the great and good who could cope. And not even all of them. Prost crashed. Lauda crashed. Piquet crashed. Tambay crashed. Warwick crashed, trying to pass Mansell for the lead, thinking the red flag was imminent. It astounds me to say, but de Cesaris crashed. Alliot and Brundle crashed before the race. Hesnault, Surer, Alboreto, Cecotto, Patrese all crashed.
In fact Ghinzani passed Fabi in the race-winning Brabham. Driving a poxy old Osella. Still based around their 1980 tub.
Indeed he kept going to finish an astonishing 5th. Osella's best genuine result in a decade of haplessness.
Therefore, Ghinzani, with horrific injuries, was only 1 place worse off than Lauda in 1976, but in a shitbox, on a rally circuit.
(Arnoux also had a day of days - coming from a pitlane start to 2nd. René occasionally had these mammoth bursts of speed...)