Toto Wolff Niki Lauda

Uzma Fatima

Mercedes Boss Toto Wolff In Need Of A Guiding Light Like Niki Lauda To Help Him Lead The Crawling Team

Niki Lauda, the name F1 fans take with respect, is the name behind the Mercedes-AMG Petronas team’s dignity. He joined the team back in 2012, carrying the role of a non-executive chairman. And steered the Silver Arrows to the path of leading eight constructors’ championships. Tragically, Mercedes lost the light of Niki Lauda following his death in 2019. And today, in the dark time, when there is a need for that light again, the team misses him the most. Recently, the Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has admitted that he lacks the influence and the positive light that the late F1 legend, Niki Lauda, brought to the team during the golden period of the Silver Arrows.

It was Niki who brought Lewis Hamilton from McLaren to Mercedes in 2013. In his presence, the team was mastered in the turbo hybrid era enough to dominate for almost a decade. He was there standing behind when Mercedes won its fifth constructor’s championship, and Hamilton became a six-time world champion in 2019. That was the year he died at the age of 70 due to a double lung transplant.

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Niki Lauda, Lewis Hamilton

“Together We Did It,” Said Toto Wolff While Missing The Legend Lauda In The Hard Times Of Mercedes

Now, in 2023, four years after the legend was gone, Mercedes remembers him once again following the struggles they have been facing. When boss Toto Wolff was asked if the team is getting affected by Lauda’s absence, he said, “Niki’s missed all those years.”

According to the Mercedes principal, he alone can’t do what they did together. “He always simplified things to make it worth mattered,” Toto said about the F1 legend. Since 2022, the team has been getting constant disappointments with their car concepts which are further away from the level at which Red Bull is optimizing. Last year, just one win, and this year still no comeback. Mercedes is definitely out of the title contention of the 2023 F1 world championship.

At this time, Wolff is sharing his feelings about how he misses his late guide. He has to think about what Niki Lauda would have said, how he would have positioned things in the right place. Sometimes, you find a way so easily that oversimplification leads you to the desired result. And this is what happened when “the two of us worked together,” said Wolff.

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Toto Wolff With Niki Lauda | Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei

Speaking more into the matter, Wolff revealed that there are a lot of nuances. F1 is a technical sport, and Wolff’s role is to translate the technical things in the perfect way that made it execute in the car design just as they wanted. However, today the need to correct things is clear on seen. Toto Wolff says, “the stopwatch never lies, and the data is missing. It needs to be corrected; we can see it.”

Why Is Niki Lauda A Hero?

Niki Lauda has a remarkable history in Formula One, and it is worth making you a fan of the sport. He won his first championship with Ferrari in 1975. However, just after a year, he collapsed, and his car crashed in the 1976 German Grand Prix at Nurburgring. It burst into flames, and he was exposed to the fire, yet he lived. The marks on his face you see after all those years are the pride he holds for being the strongest driver of F1. Niki won two more championships (in 1977 with Ferrari and in 1984 with MacLaren) after surviving the deadly crash. This led him into a coma and cost him the eyelids, half of the ears, and most of the scalp.

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The 1976 German Grand Prix, Niki Lauda Crash

Today, Mercedes is in the worst situation in Formula One. Worst, because the rest of the teams, like Red Bull [the dominating one], Ferrari [the struggling one], and Aston Martin [the rising one], have nothing to lose. They are fighting to gain. But Mercedes, which has eight constructor’s titles, has long-term dignity to lose. If they are not winning, they are losing the polish of Mercedes, which they achieved in the past. At this time, not only Toto Wolff, each Mercedes fan misses Niki Lauda or any sort of positive light.