Niki Lauda,
January 13, 2002 8:10 PM   Subscribe

Niki Lauda, three-time world F1 champion, took the wheel of a new Jaguar Formula 1 car after claiming that today's F1 cars could be driven "by a monkey". Unfortunately for Niki, after shooting off his mouth like that, the results were, well, predictable.
posted by mr_crash_davis (12 comments total)
Bobby Rahal is also holding back the giggles.
posted by machaus at 8:16 PM on January 13, 2002

Nikki went into the corner at about the same speed as Pedro De La Rosa, and he attempted to brake as late as Pedro brakes because both Eddie and Pedro wanted him to push the car around the way they do.

I think all F1 team boses (except Frank Williams) should do this.
posted by riffola at 8:20 PM on January 13, 2002

Heh I bet Bobby Rahal would at least be within ten seconds of de la Rosa.
posted by gyc at 11:51 PM on January 13, 2002

Wow! An F1 post on MeFi!
I assumed that you must be a Brit until I checked your profile. Most Americans think F1 is a web font setting.

I remember seeing Niki Lauda race back in the Watkins Glen Grand Prix days.
posted by HTuttle at 2:42 AM on January 14, 2002

BBC Sport photo: "Lauda is towed away after his second spin."
posted by Carol Anne at 5:34 AM on January 14, 2002

Brings back memories of the late 70's and early 80's, when Lauda was my hero. We used to go to the Long Beach Grand Prix every year when it was F1, and had a rented spot with viewing platforms between two flophouses, where we had a bird's-eye view of three corners. Lauda was always the guy who could consistently cut the corner within an inch of the concrete barrier. Amazing. Funny how time slips away...
posted by planetkyoto at 7:16 AM on January 14, 2002

This really shows how much F1 cars have advanced in terms of cornering speed due to tire technology rather than the slide in Lauda's reflexes. I'm sure Lauda could handle the application of the horsepower to the ground, since the turbocharged McLaren he last drove had more power and no traction control. He probably wasn't used to the extreme lateral G forces. Nevertheless, he is still a cocky, arrogant loud mouth. How can Jaguar survive with Lauda and Irvine having the same exact character traits?
posted by machaus at 7:34 AM on January 14, 2002

Yeah the two of them really provide some great quotes to the press. :) Too bad Eddie is getting old, I am going to miss him when he quits.
posted by riffola at 8:07 AM on January 14, 2002


I watch F1 racing whenever I can (thank you Speedvision!) and I'm very disappointed that it hasn't got the same kind of rabid following here as say, NASCAR. For some reason, open-wheel racing of any kind isn't too popular with the American racing fan (except possibly the World of Outlaws series), and it's a shame. They're missing out on some great driving, and on some great characters, like Niki.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:49 AM on January 14, 2002

Well one of the problems with F1 not being too popular out here in the US is because it's not available on air/cable for no extra charge, I had to watch the RTL webcast for the first 3 races last year because my cable company didn't provide Speedvision on non-digital cable lines. Of course this year even Speedvision is not sure if they will be airing F1. I really hope Bernie manages to strike a deal with Disney, and let them air it one of their channels, but they should just get the comentary from ITV, and not use idiots like Jason Priestley. US GP on ABC was awful to watch, the commentary totally sucked. Although who knows what the ITV commentary will be like without Murrary Walker. :)

I wish I lived in Europe where I could see Formula 1's digital feed on multiple channels.
posted by riffola at 11:06 AM on January 14, 2002


Watkins Glen was a great place to watch F1, as long as your car didn't get thrown into the mudpit and set on fire, and you were male & didn't have to endure the gentlemen who displayed their "Show us your t**s" signs to all the distaff spectators. Stopped going after seeing Cevert get killed in practice.

Lauda was good, but give me Jackie Stewart any day. Standing at a tough corner, you could tell Stewart - everybody else was on and off the power but he was smooth and a half-second faster. And no loud mouth.

Oh dear, waxing nostalgic.
posted by skyscraper at 11:14 AM on January 14, 2002

Ah! Niki Lauda... What a character! Weird but brilliant man, and one hell of a driver. The main link is an interesting read, re sports evolution and the impact of training and technology.

My brother is always arguing with me that if you could magically put 24 year-old Gretzky as he existed in 1985 in today's NHL, he would be a second line centre with 20-odd goals and 40 assists. While that may be extreme, it's true that sports training and technology has dramatically lept forward in the last 15 years.

gyc: Heh I bet Bobby Rahal would at least be within ten seconds of de la Rosa.
You're opening a can of worms, here! I'm not sure MeFi could stand age-old CART-vs-F1 arguments. Strictly as an FYI: Rahal vs Lauda F1 career stats. I say within 40 laps, Lauda could be within 3 seconds of De La Rosa, which isn't extraordinary. To chop off the extra 4 seconds (it's Lauda, he should be faster than De La Rosa, dammit!), he would need 20 years less on his body clock, 1 year intensive training, and a few hundred laps.

machaus: Nevertheless, he is still a cocky, arrogant loud mouth. How can Jaguar survive with Lauda and Irvine having the same exact character traits?
Well, they're not doing very well, are they?

Sorry about the long post, lonely F1 fanatic here...
posted by qbert72 at 4:43 PM on January 15, 2002

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