Hero of the Day: Moon Racer

A Formula 1 legend suffers interplanetary shenanigans with grace.

Peter Bischoff/Getty

Niki Lauda, who’s posing next to “The Future Car.” This is a promotional still from 1985, for the German television special 100 Years of the Automobile. Lauda, a three-time Formula 1 champ, known for his no-bullshit approach and exceptional cojones at the wheel, a man who once had his face melted off in a single-seat inferno, has been trotted out for publicity photos. It is one of the most absorb things I’ve ever seen. Seriously, is that a tin foil laser gun? Why are the wheels wrapped with kitchen drain strainer? In “The Future,” have we regressed to using cross-hatched plastic lawn chairs as bucket seats? And yet, there’s Lauda, suffering the idiocy with grace. For that, and his courage in an F1 cockpit, we salute him. Hero.

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