Wise Niki


Last Friday I sat down with Niki Lauda in the Mercedes hospitality in Sochi. I had to deliver a message from a common friend so, after exchanging on personal matters for a while, we started to talk shop about Ferrari and Mercedes, coz Niki knows I have a soft spot for the Scuderia. He asked me: “how is it in the red camp?” Only for me to reply: “They are thirsty for victory Niki”.

He said: “I know it” and he added, “This year’s success in the Championship is down to the Team or to the driver who makes less mistakes because the difference in performance between the two cars is next to nothing.” I left that pleasant chat with a smile on my face, expecting another exciting week-end to develop and … yes, exciting it was!! It was so awesome to see joy back in the Ferrari garage after Vettel’s pole on Saturday, the cameras picturing the Maranello boys finally exchanging happy remarks, making it too easy for my lip reading skills to catch. To scream it in an even louder Team statement, Kimi decided to place number seven alongside Seb’s Gina, thus making history again, nine years after Ferrari did it at the French GP. On Sunday, however, Lauda’s words came back to me in a flash, straight after the start of the race: a small hesitation by the Scuderia drivers gave Bottas an unexpected lead. See? the Mercedes Guru was right … It was down to a small mistake on one side and to an impeccable drive on the other for the result, given for granted after Saturday’s epic scarlet triumph, to be quickly overturned. Well, Niki, if you are right and wise as I believe you are, its gonna be mega all year round …

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