Fatalities can also happen in F1 - Lauda

Niki Lauda insists Henry Surtees' death at the wheel of a formula 2 car on Sunday should be a reminder that fatalities in premier open wheel categories remain possible. "There can always be accidents like that, also in Formula One," the former...

Niki Lauda insists Henry Surtees' death at the wheel of a formula 2 car on Sunday should be a reminder that fatalities in premier open wheel categories remain possible.

"There can always be accidents like that, also in Formula One," the former triple world champion, who nearly died after his fiery Nurburgring crash in 1976, told Germany's Sport Bild.

Some reports have indicated it is the inferior and low-cost nature of the F2 series that contributed to the death of Surtees, who was struck on the helmet at 200kph by the flying wheel of a crashed competitor.

In fact, the single seaters in the relaunched FIA series were designed by Williams and passed all the tests and safety standards seen in Formula One in 2005, even though the safety of some of the circuits used is not as high.

"The safety standard in Formula One is very high, no question, but we should not be dazzled by that," the Austrian, who learned of Surtees' crash by text message from his own racing son, said during the interview.

Mathias Lauda, 28, drives for Mercedes in the DTM series.

"As a racing driver and a father it is very clear to me that motor sport is dangerous," Niki Lauda continued.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Niki Lauda , Mathias Lauda , Henry Surtees
Teams Mercedes , Williams