Private funeral for Niki Lauda, but coffin to be on display in Vienna

Private funeral for Niki Lauda, but coffin to be on display in Vienna

Vienna - Austrians will be able to pay their last respects to motorsport icon Niki Lauda next week at St Stephen's, Vienna's main cathedral, a church official told dpa.

The closed coffin will be put on display in the gothic cathedral next Wednesday, followed by a public requiem mass.

The burial of the Austrian triple F1 world champion will only be attended by his family, which has declined an offer by the city of Vienna to erect a cenotaph in Lauda's honour at the city's main cemetery.

Lauda died Monday at the age of 70 in a Zurich hospital, having failed to regain his health after a lung transplant last year.

Austria's Niki Lauda behind the wheel of his Ferrari 312 T2 on the track of Florano in September 1976, after a near-fatal crash on August 1 during the German Grand Prix. File picture: Raoul Fornezza/AP
Austrian auto racer Niki Lauda, following his near-fatal crash at the German Grand Prix six weeks before, announces he would start at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza in September 1976. File picture: AP
Former Formula One World Champion turned aviation entrepreneur Niki Lauda poses for photographers in front of an Airbus A320 bearing his company's distinctive branding at Vienna's Airport. File picture: Heinz-Peter Bader/Reuters

Following his successful racing career, Lauda bought, managed and sold airlines as an aviation entrepreneur.

He had served as non-executive chairman of the Mercedes F1 team since 2012.