For more than 40 years Niki Lauda has been one of the most prominent characters in the F1 paddock. From humble beginnings as a pay driver at BRM, he rose to become one of the sport's superstars, leading a stellar period in Ferrari's history.
After dominating the 1975 season, he was heading for back-to-back titles in '76 before he suffered one of the worst accidents captured on film, at the Nürburgring. His subsequent recovery is ingrained in F1 legend, though the scars he carries from the accident that so nearly killed him remain traced across his face and skull.
He raced on into mid-'79, latterly with Brabham, but "tired of driving around in circles" he quit F1 to run his own airline, before being tempted back into the cockpit by McLaren for 1982. Using all his experience and wiles he pipped Alain Prost to the 1984 title before exiting racing for good a year later.