Niki Lauda laid to rest as fans pay tribute to F1 legend

Formula One fans had one last chance to say goodbye to Niki Lauda at the icon's funeral.

The Austrian hero is to be buried with full state honours and will be laid to rest in the Neustifter Friedhof (Neustift Cemetery) in the Doebling borough, where his mother is buried, later this afternoon.

Lauda will be buried in a Ferrari racing suit, the Italian team with whom he won two of his three world championships with.

There will also be a mass that will be attended by Austrian President Alexander van der Bellen, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Lewis Hamilton, former Austrian F1 driver Gerhard Berger and Mercedes team chief Toto Wolff.

On Wednesday morning, fans had the chance to pay their respects to Lauda, who will lie in state in a coffin decorated with a laurel wreath put out in the centre of the church.

His racing helmet was put on top of the coffin before people had the chance to walk by the three-time F1 championship winner, who will be dressed in a Ferrari racing suit in which he will also be buried.

Lauda's children will hold an intercession for their deceased father in the church in Vienna's old town centre.

Austria's President Alexander Van der Bellen will also hold a eulogy in the church for the man who was considered to be one of the greatest Austrian sportsmen and public characters who ever lived.

As Lauda's family want to keep the event relatively private, it will not be broadcast on live TV.

Lauda died last week in his sleep in the University Hospital in Zurich, Switzerland, where he underwent dialysis treatment for kidney problems following a prolonged period of ill health.

Following Lauda's fiery crash during the 1976 German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring where he suffered severe burns, damaged his lungs and narrowly escaped death, he was frequently hospitalised.

He received kidney transplants in 1976 and 2005 (from his brother Florian and second wife Birgit as donors respectively) as well as a lung transplant in Vienna in August last year.

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