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Niki Lauda - Wikipedia

Link: http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niki_Lauda; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niki


_Lauda
Andreas Nikolaus Lauda (Viena, 22 de fevereiro 1949) mais conhecido como Niki La
uda, um ex-automobilista e piloto austraco. Atualmente proprietrio da companhia are
a Niki, e diretor da equipe Mercedes GP de Formula 1 ligada fbrica Mercedes Benz
Participou do Campeonato Mundial de Frmula 1 entre 1971 1979 e de 1982 1985, disp
utando 177 Grandes Prmios, obtendo 25 vitrias, 24 pole positions e 24 melhores vol
tas, totalizando 419.5 pontos. Sagrou-se tri campeo mundial em 1975, 1977 e 1984.
Pilotou para as equipes: March, BRM, Ferrari, Brabham e McLaren
Niki Lauda iniciou sua carreira no automobilismo em 1968, destacando-se na Frmula
3 e na Frmula 2 antes de ingressar na Frmula 1, levando uma verba pessoal para a
ento pequena equipe March. Estreou no Grande Prmio da ustria, abandonando por probl
emas mecnicos. Manteve-se na categoria at o final de 1973 graas ao dinheiro da famli
a, quando a Ferrari o contratou para ser seu piloto titular. Em 1974, pela escud
eria italiana, venceu seu primeiro Grande Prmio, em Jarama, na Espanha.
Em 1975, aps cinco vitrias (quatro das quais aps largar em primeiro lugar), sagrouse campeo mundial pela primeira vez. Manteve o ritmo competitivo em 1976, mas um
acidente em Nurburgring (onde seu carro incendiou-se, e Lauda ficou preso nas fe
rragens por vrios minutos) quase lhe tirou a vida. Um padre chegou a ser chamado
ao hospital para lhe dar a extrema uno. Mas apesar de graves queimaduras, que lhe
custou partes da orelha direita,1 Lauda ainda voltaria a correr naquele ano, e s
perderia o ttulo mundial na ltima corrida, o Grande Prmio do Japo (estreia no calendr
io) para o ingls James Hunt. Em 1977 obteve 3 vitrias e recuperou o ttulo mundial.
Ao final daquele ano, abandonaria a Ferrari para juntar-se Brabham-Alfa Romeo, d
irigida por Bernie Ecclestone. A parceria lhe rendeu duas vitrias e cinco podiuns
em 1978, mas a frequncia de quebras lhe deixou fora da disputa pelo ttulo. Em 197
9 marcou apenas quatro pontos. Os maus resultados fizeram Lauda direcionar suas
atenes para a companhia area que acabara de fundar, e assim deixou a Frmula 1.
Niki Lauda ao lanar sua autobiografia, em 1996
Durante o perodo em que ficou afastado, alm de administrar sua empresa de aviao, Nik
i Lauda chegou at a ser comentarista e reprter de Frmula 1 para um canal de televiso
austraco. Entretanto, Lauda recebeu convite da McLaren para voltar s pistas em 19
82. Aps duas corridas de readaptao, Lauda venceu no seu novo time, o Grande Prmio do
Oeste em Long Beach e o Grande Prmio da Gr-Bretanha em Brands Hatch; no seu retor
no terminou em 5 na classificao final. Em 1983, sem condies de acompanhar as equipes
com motor Turbo, Lauda pouco pde fazer no campeonato; nenhuma vitria e apenas dois
podiuns: 3 no Grande Prmio do Brasil em Jacarepagu e o 2 no Grande Prmio do Oeste do
s Estados Unidos em Long Beach. Faltando quatro provas para o trmino, a McLaren i
niciava o desenvolvimento com o motor Porsche, financiada pela TAG; o piloto aus
traco terminou o ano em 10 lugar. Para a temporada de 1984, iniciou o ano desacred
itado, e seu companheiro de equipe, o francs Alain Prost, era o favorito ao ttulo.
Aps 5 vitrias (contra 7 de Prost), Lauda seria campeo mundial pela terceira vez co
m apenas meio ponto de vantagem (Prost marcara apenas metade dos pontos - 4,5 da vitria do Grande Prmio de Mnaco, encerrado prematuramente por causa da chuva). L
auda ia para a defesa do ttulo em 1985, mas sem motivao, obteve apenas 1 vitria e ab
andonou 12 das 15 provas do ano. Sua ltima prova na carreira foi o Grande Prmio da
Austrlia (estreia no calendrio), porm abandonou-a aps um acidente no final da reta
Brabham. Encerrou sua carreira na categoria em 10 na classificao final.
Lauda permaneceu muitos anos afastado da Frmula 1, gerenciando sua empresa de avi
ao, retornando como consultor tcnico extraordinrio da Ferrari nos anos 1990. Em 2001
foi contratado pela Jaguar para assumir as funes de diretor tcnico, mas resultados

inexpressivos o levaram demisso em 2003.


Em setembro de 2012, foi nomeado presidente no-executivo da equipe Mercedes. Part
icipou das negociaes que trouxeram Lewis Hamilton para a equipe alem, no final de 2
012.
Em 2013, o filme Rush conta a histria do campeonato mundial de 1976 e a disputa d
o ttulo entre Niki Lauda e James Hunt.
Andreas Nikolaus "Niki" Lauda (born 22 February 1949) is an Austrian former Form
ula One driver who was three times F1 World Champion, winning in 1975, 1977 and
1984. He is currently the only driver to have been champion for both Ferrari and
McLaren, the sport's two most successful constructors. More recently an aviatio
n entrepreneur, he has founded and run two airlines (Lauda Air and Niki). He was
also a consultant for Scuderia Ferrari and team manager of the Jaguar Formula O
ne racing team for two years. He is currently working as a pundit for German TV
during Grand Prix weekends and acts as non-executive chairman of the Mercedes AM
G Petronas F1 Team.
Lauda was seriously injured in a crash at the 1976 German Grand Prix at the Nrbur
gring, during which his Ferrari burst into flames and he came close to death aft
er inhaling hot toxic fumes and suffering severe burns. However he recovered and
returned to race again just six weeks later at the Italian Grand Prix. Scars fr
om the injuries he suffered have left him permanently disfigured.
Niki Lauda was born on 22 February 1949 in Vienna, Austria, to a wealthy family.
His paternal grandfather was the Viennese-born businessman Hans Lauda.[1][2]
Lauda became a racing driver despite his family's disapproval. After starting ou
t with a Mini, Lauda moved on into Formula Vee, as was normal in Central Europe,
but rapidly moved up to drive in private Porsche and Chevron sports cars. With
his career stalled, he took out a 30,000 GBP bank loan,[3] secured by a life insu
rance policy, to buy his way into the fledgling March team as a Formula Two (F2)
driver in 1971. Because of his family's disapproval he had an ongoing feud with
his family over his racing ambitions and abandoned further contact.[4] He was q
uickly promoted to the F1 team, but drove for March in F1 and F2 in 1972. Althou
gh the F2 cars were good (and Lauda's driving skills impressed March principal R
obin Herd), March's 1972 F1 season was catastrophic. Lauda, in despair and deep
debt, briefly contemplated suicide but finally took out another bank loan to buy
his way into the BRM team in 1973. Lauda was instantly quick, but the team was
in decline; his big break came when his BRM teammate Clay Regazzoni left to rejo
in Ferrari in 1974 and team owner Enzo Ferrari asked him what he thought of Laud
a. Regazzoni spoke so favourably of Lauda that Ferrari promptly signed him, payi
ng Niki enough to clear his debts.
After an unsuccessful start to the 1970s culminating in a disastrous start to th
e 1973 season, Ferrari regrouped completely under Luca di Montezemolo and were r
esurgent in 1974. The team's faith in the little-known Lauda was quickly rewarde
d by a second-place finish in his dbut race for the team, the season-opening Arge
ntine Grand Prix. His first Grand Prix (GP) victory
and the first for Ferrari si
nce 1972 followed only three races later in the Spanish Grand Prix. Although Lau
da became the season's pacesetter, achieving six consecutive pole positions, a m
ixture of inexperience and mechanical unreliability meant Lauda won only one mor
e race that year, the Dutch GP. He finished fourth in the Drivers' Championship
and demonstrated immense commitment to testing and improving the car.
The 1975 F1 season started slowly for Lauda, but after nothing better than a fif
th-place finish in the first four races he then won four out of the next five ra
ces in the new Ferrari 312T. His first World Championship was confirmed with a t
hird place finish at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza; Lauda's teammate Regazzoni

won the race and Ferrari clinched their first constructor's championship in 11
years; Lauda then picked up a fifth win at the last race of the year, the United
States GP at Watkins Glen. He also became the first driver to lap the Nrburgring
Nordschleife in under 7 minutes, which was considered a huge feat as the Nordsc
hleife section of the Nrburgring was 2 miles longer than it is today. Never one t
o be awed by the trappings of success, Lauda famously gave away any trophies he
won to his local garage in exchange for his car to be washed and serviced.[5]
Unlike 1975 and despite tensions between Lauda and di Montezemolo's successor, D
aniele Audetto, Lauda dominated the start of the 1976 F1 season, winning four of
the first six races and finishing second in the other two. By the time of his f
ifth win of the year at the British GP, he had more than double the points of hi
s closest challengers Jody Scheckter and James Hunt, and a second consecutive Wo
rld Championship appeared a formality. It would be a feat not achieved since Jac
k Brabham's victories in 1959 and 1960. He also looked set to win the most races
in a season, a record held by the late Jim Clark since 1963.
A week before the 1976 German Grand Prix at the Nrburgring, even though he was th
e fastest driver on that circuit at the time, Lauda urged his fellow drivers to
boycott the race, largely because of the 23 kilometres (14 mi) circuit's safety
arrangements. Most of the other drivers voted against the boycott and the race w
ent ahead. On 1 August 1976 during the second lap at the very fast left kink bef
ore Bergwerk, Lauda was involved in an accident where his Ferrari swerved off th
e track, hit an embankment, burst into flames and made contact with Brett Lunger
's Surtees-Ford car. As opposed to Lunger, Lauda was trapped in the wreckage. Dr
ivers Arturo Merzario, Lunger, Guy Edwards and Harald Ertl arrived at the scene
a few moments later, but before they were able to pull Lauda from his car, he su
ffered severe burns to his head and inhaled hot toxic gases that damaged his lun
gs and blood. As Lauda was wearing a modified helmet, the foam had compressed an
d it slid off his head after the accident, leaving his face exposed to the fire.
[6] Although Lauda was conscious and able to stand immediately after the acciden
t, he later lapsed into a coma.[7]
Lauda suffered extensive scarring from the burns to his head, losing most of his
right ear as well as the hair on the right side of his head, his eyebrows and h
is eyelids. He chose to limit reconstructive surgery to replacing the eyelids an
d getting them to work properly. Since the accident he has always worn a cap to
cover the scars on his head. He has arranged for sponsors to use the cap for adv
ertising.
With Lauda out of the contest, Carlos Reutemann was taken on as his replacement.
Ferrari boycotted the Austrian GP in protest at what they saw as preferential t
reatment shown towards McLaren driver James Hunt at the Spanish and British GPs.
Surprisingly, Lauda returned to race only six weeks (two races) later, appearing
at the Monza press conference with his fresh burns still bandaged. He finished
fourth in the Italian GP, despite being, by his own admission, absolutely petrif
ied. F1 journalist Nigel Roebuck recalls seeing Lauda in the pits, peeling the b
lood-soaked bandages off his scarred scalp. He also had to wear a specially adap
ted AGV crash helmet so as to not be in too much discomfort. In Lauda's absence,
Hunt had mounted a late charge to reduce Lauda's lead in the World Championship
standings. Following wins in the Canadian and United States GPs, Hunt stood onl
y three points behind Lauda before the final race of the season, the Japanese GP
.
Lauda qualified third, one place behind Hunt, but on race day there was torrenti
al rain and Lauda retired after two laps. He later said that he felt it was unsa
fe to continue under these conditions, especially since his eyes were watering e
xcessively because of his fire-damaged tear ducts and inability to blink. Hunt l
ed much of the race before his tires blistered and an inevitable pit stop droppe

d him down the order. He recovered to 3rd, thus winning the title by a single po
int.
Lauda's previously good relationship with Ferrari was severely affected by his d
ecision to withdraw from the race, and he endured a difficult 1977 season, despi
te easily winning the championship through consistency rather than outright pace
. Lauda disliked his new teammate, Reutemann, who had already served as his repl
acement driver while he had been out of contest. Lauda was not comfortable with
this move and felt he had been let down by Ferrari. "We never could stand each o
ther, and instead of taking pressure off me, they put on even more by bringing C
arlos Reutemann into the team."[8] Having announced his decision to quit Ferrari
at season's end, Lauda left earlier because of the team's decision to run the u
nknown Gilles Villeneuve in a third car at the Canadian Grand Prix.
Brabham and first retirement 1978-1981[edit]
Having joined Brabham in 1978 for a $1 million salary, Lauda endured two unsucce
ssful seasons, notable mainly for his one race in the Brabham BT46B, a radical d
esign known as the Fan Car: it won its first and only race at the Swedish GP, bu
t Brabham did not use the car in F1 again; other teams vigorously protested the
fan car's legality and Brabham team owner Bernie Ecclestone, who at the time was
maneuvering for acquisition of Formula One's commercial rights, did not want to
fight a protracted battle over the car, but the victory in Sweden remained offi
cial. The Brabham BT46 Alfa Romeo began the 1978 season at the third race in Sou
th Africa. It suffered from a variety of troubles that forced Lauda to retire th
e car 9 out of 14 races. Lauda's best results, apart from the win in Sweden and
one in Italy after the penalization of Mario Andretti and Gilles Villeneuve, wer
e a 2nd in Montreal and Great Britain, and a 3rd in the Netherlands. At the 1979
Canadian Grand Prix, after a second season marred by retirements and poor pace,
Lauda informed Brabham that he wished to retire immediately, as he had no more
desire to "drive around in circles". Lauda, who in the meantime had founded Laud
a Air, a charter airline, returned to Austria to run the company full-time.
In 1982 Lauda returned to racing. After a successful test with McLaren, the only
problem was in convincing then team sponsor Marlboro that he was still capable
of winning. Lauda proved he was still quite capable when, in his third race back
, he won the Long Beach Grand Prix. Before the opening race of the season at Kya
lami race track in South Africa, Lauda was the organiser of the so-called "drive
rs' strike"; Lauda had seen that the new Super Licence required the drivers to c
ommit themselves to their present teams and realised that this could hinder a dr
iver's negotiating position. The drivers, with the exception of Teo Fabi, barric
aded themselves in a banqueting suite at Sunnyside Park Hotel until they had won
the day.[9]
Lauda won a third world championship in 1984 by half a point over teammate Alain
Prost, due only to half points being awarded for the shortened 1984 Monaco Gran
d Prix. His Austrian Grand Prix victory that year is so far the only time an Aus
trian has won his home Grand Prix. Initially, Lauda did not want Prost to become
his teammate, as he presented a much faster rival. However, during the two seas
ons together, they had a good relationship and Lauda later admitted that beating
the talented Frenchman was a big motivator for him.[10] The whole season contin
ued to be dominated by Lauda and Prost, who won 12 of 16 races. Lauda won five r
aces, while Prost was able to win seven Grands Prix. However, Lauda, who was abl
e to set records for most Pole Position in a season during the 1975 season, rare
ly matched his teammate in qualifying. Despite this, Lauda's championship win ca
me in Estoril, when he had to start in eleventh place on the grid, while Prost q
ualified on the front row. Prost did everything he could in Portugal, starting f
rom second and winning his 7th race of the season. But Lauda's calculating drive
(which included setting the fastest race lap), passing car after car, saw him f
inish second behind his teammate which gave him enough points to win his third t
itle. His second place was a lucky one though as Nigel Mansell was in second for

much of the race. However, as it was his last race with Lotus before joining Wi
lliams in 1985, Lotus boss Peter Warr refused to give Mansell the brakes he want
ed for his car and predictably the Englishman retired with brake failure on lap
52. As Lauda had passed the Toleman of F1 rookie Ayrton Senna for third place on
ly a few laps earlier, Mansell's retirement elevated him to second behind Prost.
1985 was a poor season for Lauda, with eleven retirements from the fourteen race
s he started. He did not start the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps after
crashing and breaking his wrist during practice, and he later missed the Europe
an Grand Prix at Brands Hatch; John Watson replaced him for that race. He did ma
nage 4th at the San Marino Grand Prix, 5th at the German Grand Prix, and a singl
e race win at the Dutch Grand Prix where he held off a fast finishing Prost late
in the race. This proved to be his last Grand Prix victory and also the last Fo
rmula One Grand Prix held in the Netherlands. After announcing his impending ret
irement at the 1985 Austrian Grand Prix, he retired for good at the end of that
season.
Niki Lauda's final Formula One Grand Prix drive was the inaugural Australian Gra
nd Prix in Adelaide, South Australia. After qualifying 16th, a steady drive saw
him leading by lap 53. However, the McLaren's ceramic brakes suffered on the str
eet circuit and he crashed out of the lead at the end of the long Brabham Straig
ht on lap 57 when his brakes finally failed. He was one of only two drivers in t
he race who had actually driven in the non-championship 1984 Australian Grand Pr
ix, the other being the man who would not only win in Adelaide in 1985 but would
take Lauda's place at McLaren in 1986, 1982 World Champion Keke Rosberg.
In 1993 Lauda returned to Formula One in a managerial position when Luca di Mont
ezemolo offered him a consulting role at Ferrari. Halfway through the 2001 seaso
n Lauda assumed the role of team manager of the Jaguar Formula One team. The tea
m, however, failed to improve and Lauda was made redundant, together with 70 oth
er key figures, at the end of 2003.
In September 2012 he was appointed non-executive chairman of the Mercedes AMG Pe
tronas F1 Team.[11] He took part in the negotiations of signing Lewis Hamilton t
o a three-year deal with AMG Mercedes.[12]
Lauda returned to running his airline, Lauda Air, on his second Formula One reti
rement in 1985. During his time as airline manager, he was appointed consultant
at Ferrari as part of an effort by Montezemolo to rejuvenate the team.[13] After
selling his Lauda Air shares to majority partner Austrian Airlines in 1999, he
managed the Jaguar Formula One racing team from 2001 to 2002. In late 2003, he s
tarted a new airline, Niki. Lauda holds a commercial pilot's licence and from ti
me to time acted as a captain on the flights of his airline.[citation needed] La
uda Air ceased operations in July 2013.[citation needed]
He was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1993 and sinc
e 1996 has provided commentary on Grands Prix for Austrian and German television
on RTL. He was, however, rapped for calling Robert Kubica a "polacke" which is
abusive mix of two words: Pole and Kakerlake (cockroach) and means "polish cockr
oach". It happened on air in May 2010 at the Monaco Grand Prix.[14][15]
Niki Lauda has written five books: The Art and Science of Grand Prix Driving (ti
tled Formula 1: The Art and Technicalities of Grand Prix Driving in some markets
) (1975); My Years With Ferrari (1978); The New Formula One: A Turbo Age (1984);
Meine Story (titled To Hell and Back in some markets) (1986); Das dritte Leben
(1996).[16] Lauda credits Austrian journalist Herbert Volker with editing the bo
oks.
Lauda is sometimes known by the nickname "the rat", "SuperRat" or "King Rat" bec
ause of his prominent bucked teeth. He has been associated with both Parmalat an

d Viessmann, sponsoring the ever present 'cappy' he has worn since 1976, used to
hide the severe burns he sustained in his 1976 accident. Lauda said in a 2009 i
nterview with the German newspaper Die Zeit that an advertiser was paying 1.2m fo
r the space on his famous red cap.[17]
In 2005 the Austrian post office issued a stamp honouring him.[18] In 2008, Amer
ican sports television network ESPN ranked him 22nd on their top drivers of alltime.[19]
Personal life[edit]
Lauda has two sons with first wife, Marlene Knaus (married 1976, divorced 1991):
Mathias, a racing driver himself, and Lukas, who also acts as Mathias's manager
. Lauda has a son, Christoph, through an extra-marital relationship. In 2008 he
married Birgit Wetzinger, who is 30 years his junior and was a flight attendant
for his airline. She donated a kidney to Lauda when the kidney he received in a
transplant from his brother, years earlier, failed. In September 2009 Birgit gav
e birth to twins, a boy and a girl: Max and Mia.[20]