Niki Lauda’s foundation sued for €30 million by widow

Niki Lauda's foundation sued for €30 million by widow

The widow of former Formula 1 world champion Niki Lauda is suing his foundation for a proportion of his assets.

Niki Lauda’s family is involved in a nasty legal dispute nearly four years after the legendary Formula 1 driver passed away. The widow of the three-time F1 champion, Birgit Wetzinger, is allegedly suing the late racing legend’s foundation for a whopping €30 million.

Wetzinger, who met Lauda when she was working as a flight attendant in the early 2000s, wed him in 2008, and is the mother of their twins, Max and Mia. The Austrian driver’s foundation, which he set up in 1997 to provide for his family, including his children from a previous marriage, Lukas and Mathias, is the subject of the case, according to the German publication Bild.

Austrian legendary Formula 1 driver Niki Lauda passed away in 2019 after a distinguished career on the track and in the paddock. In his latter years, Lauda supported the Mercedes Formula 1 team after winning two Drivers’ Championships at Ferrari and one for McLaren.

The Silver Arrows honored Lauda with a posthumous renaming of the road leading to their technical center, reflecting his contributions to Formula 1 and Mercedes.

“He was a massive contributor to our success, a great sparring partner for me and a strong non-executive chairman, who we miss dearl,” Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said.

“I wish he was still here as my friend and as a chairman, because there would have been many questions, I’d have liked to ask him this year.”

Lauda’s second wife, Birgit Wetzinger, who was 44, was his wife at the time of his passing.

After spending several years at the top of Formula 1, he was estimated to have a net worth of between €200 million and €500 million when he passed away. Lauda is believed to have made provisions in his will to prevent inheritance disputes in order to maintain harmony among his bereaved family.

Wetzinger is reportedly suing for €30 million over the revenues from his foundation, which his family believes are subject to dispute.

“Birgit started all these proceedings,” a family friend told Austrian newspaper Kurier. “The rest of the family fully agree with the way Niki arranged it.

“They respect his will and are ready to defend it in court.”

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