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F1 will pay tribute to Niki Lauda at the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend after the death of the triple world champion

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F1 will pay tribute to Niki Lauda at the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend after the death of the triple world champion
Image via Daily Express

Formula One will pay tribute to Niki Lauda at the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend after the death of the triple world champion.

The Austrian, who died on Monday at the age of 70, won in Monaco with Ferrari in 1975 and 1976. He then became non-executive chairman and a major shareholder of the Mercedes team together with Toto Wolff.

An F1 spokesman said that work is being done on the tribute, but the details are yet to be confirmed. Others said a minute of silence is planned before the race.

Five-time F1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton, who paid an emotional tribute to the Austrian at Instagram, made an appearance in the paddock on Wednesday but was not at the FIA press conference.

Finland’s Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton’s team-mate, took the Brit’s place.

“He (Lauda) meant a lot to me. He was a key member of our team …, a big part of the Mercedes family and a great motivation for everyone,” Bottas told reporters.

Mercedes said team members will wear black bracelets starting Thursday and will pay him a tribute, which is yet to be decided, in their cars.

Ferrari also said he would honor Lauda, who won two of his titles with the Italian team in the 1970s and returned to the tracks after suffering severe burns from an accident that nearly cost him his life in 1976 while competing.

McLaren, the team with which the Austrian won his third title in 1984, was another team that joined the promises of a tribute on their cars.

“Niki’s loss is of great importance to F1,” said category general manager Ross Brawn, who worked with Lauda on Mercedes in 2012. “His presence in the paddock was a reminder that F1 is a sport of heroes, a stage for competitors who surpass the common limits of strength and endurance (…) It was simply a legend.