Motorsport

Niki Lauda: 'Too much safety will destroy F1'

By Henry Young, CNN

Published 1443 GMT (2243 HKT) July 1, 2016
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Three-time F1 champion Niki Lauda was critically burnt in a near-fatal crash at the Nürburgring 40 years ago. Nonetheless, he believes "too much safety will destroy the sport."
Adrian Murrell/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Now 67, the Austrian had championed the importance of safety in the build up to that fateful 1976 German Grand Prix. But, though he called for his fellow drivers to boycott it, the race at the famous Nurburgring circuit went ahead. Frank Barratt/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Close to death after inhaling toxic gas and suffering severe burns, Lauda returned to racing just six weeks after the accident -- though he was left with permanent scarring. AFP/Getty Images
Today, he works as the non-executive chairman at the Mercedes F1 team and collected the 2016 Laureus Award for a lifetime of sporting achievement. Mark Thompson/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images
The former champion is not the only one to address the safety situation in motorsport. Alluding to the "halo" design considered for implementation next year, Nico Hulkenberg told CNN: "For me single seated racing in F1 has always been open, and I would like to see it open in the future." Getty Images/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images
Daniil Kvyat has also weighed into the debate, telling CNN: "It's an important part of my job that this is that this sport is dangerous, and we have to maintain it as such." Above, Sauber driver Esteban Gutierrez crashes out in dramatic fashion at the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix. MARWAN NAAMANI/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Spanish driver Fernando Alonso suffered a bad crash at the Australian Grand Prix this year. Alonso missed the following race in Bahrain due to fractured ribs. MAX BLYTON/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Tragically, Jules Bianchi. The Frenchman died last year as a result of injuries suffered in a crash at the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix. Dan Istitene/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images
Ayrton Senna, considered by many to be the greatest F1 driver of all time, is another to have lost his life on the racetrack. The triple world champion died following at crash at the Imola Circuit in 1994 Anton Want/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images