Pole position: I don’t remember F1 legends Niki Lauda and James Hunt bleating about the heat…top, elite sport is brutal

When I heard about the stomach conditions at last weekend’s Qatar GP, I felt that many observers were surprised to learn that Grand Prix racing is a tough business. It’s an old trick, but it was introduced at this time by “Dad” Hemingway.

   The bearded sage said before he blew his thoughts: “There are only three sports: bullfighting, motor sports and mountain climbing; all the rest are mere games.” Our own James Hunt put it another way, observing, “They’re forever denying it, but the reason people come here to watch is to see if one of us dies.” Hunt’s greatest rival, also now gone, Niki Lauda, ​​was very supportive of his actions bordering on madness, never more so than at Monza in 1976, when he almost came back from the dead.

   Almost burnt out at the sadistic Nürburgring in Germany, he returned 40 days later without an eyelid to race at 120 mph (190 km/h), changing some 1,400 gears with his right arm, which was almost amputated. My late colleague at this magazine, master of these pages Ian Wooldridge, was there.

   “Is this a 27-year-old man,” Ian wondered, “so unwilling to accept a lay title that he is willing to bet life against death when most men are hiding their desperate wounds in the dark room of a clinic? And if so, what is the meaning of this?” psychological definition?? James Hunt (R) and his great rival Niki Lauda (L) accepted the dangers of Formula 1. James Hunt (R) and his great rival Niki Lauda (L) accepted the dangers of Formula 1

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