This wasn't how it happened. But it could have been had fortune been kinder to Robert Kubica.
Kubica was frustrated at the start of the 2011 season, having been unable to contest January's Monte Carlo Rally because employer Renault did not have an S2000-spec car for him and would not allow him to drive a rival manufacturer's car. His planned runout in a Skoda Fabia in the Ronde di Andora Rally between the first and second pre-season Formula 1 tests was also nixed.
But other than being prevented from dabbling in rallying when there was a gap in the F1 schedule, things were looking up. After moving to Renault in 2010 and enjoying a strong season in a car that was good enough for the odd podium but not race wins, expectations were high for the coming campaign.