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2018-11-09 09:48

BRAIN'S TRUST: Ross Brawn (L) chats to Mercedes F1 team's Niki Lauda (C) and Toto Wolff (R). Image: AFP / Saeed Khan

Niki Lauda may need more time before he is ready to return to Formula 1.

That is the view of Lewis Hamilton, after Bernie Ecclestone said F1 legend Lauda's "secret plan" is to be back from a long layoff in Abu Dhabi late this month.

'Normal quality of life'

According to Lauda's doctors, the Mercedes team chairman will eventually be able to return to the paddock with his new lung.

READ: Lauda aims for Abu Dhabi comeback - Ecclestone

"We expect that he will have a nearly normal quality of life," Dr Peter Jacsch said.

"He will certainly be able to fly and drive again."

But Hamilton thinks Abu Dhabi might be too soon for the 69-year-old.

"It would be great to see him back on his feet. But I do not expect it and nobody else can," the Mercedes driver said.

"You don't just switch out a lung. He was very close to death. Niki has lost a lot of weight," Hamilton added in Brazil.

"For me it's unlikely that it happens. But it's Niki, and that's why it's possible," he said when told about Lauda's Abu Dhabi plans.

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