Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff expects Niki Lauda to return to the F1 paddock once he is fit enough as he continues his recovery from a lung transplant. The three-time Formula 1 world champion, now Mercedes' non-executive chairman, was this week released from hospital after more than two months in intensive care.
Lauda fell ill on holiday and was ultimately hospitalised in Vienna – where he has remained in intensive care for the past two months as doctors try to stave off infection.
Regularly positive updates followed since before it was confirmed on Wednesday that he was finally fit enough to go home.
Although Vienna General Hospital said in a statement that Lauda's rehabilitation would be "intensive", Wolff believes that his fellow Austrian will have already set sights on making it back onto the F1 scene.
Asked if Lauda would return to the paddock in the future, Wolff told Sky Sports: "I think so yes.
Two and a half months after a lung transplant, we’re delighted to hear that our Chairman and friend Niki Lauda has left hospital in Vienna.
Niki will now begin a phase of intensive rehabilitation, as he continues his road to recovery.
"You can see that it will take some time but I wouldn't be surprised if he has set himself targets to come back quickly.
"He's on the mend and he's getting better every week.
"It's a complex surgery and I think you just need to give him time but he's pushing flat out like we know him."