Hamilton, Grosjean: Remarkable Kubica F1 comeback an inspiration

Robert Kubica's short-lived Formula 1 comeback has been hailed as "remarkable" and an "inspiration" by Lewis Hamilton and Romain Grosjean, following the announcement he will leave Williams after 2019

Hamilton, Grosjean: Remarkable Kubica F1 comeback an inspiration

Kubica's return to F1 this season ended an absence stretching back to the 2010 finale after a rallying crash in early '11 partially severed his arm and left him with enormous life complications.

His Williams drive this season was a significant step from anything he had done since recovering from the serious injuries he sustained in his accident, with Kubica restricted to competing in the European and World Rally Championships, and racing GT machinery.

However, Kubica has already decided to leave Williams before the end of a difficult season in which he has been outperformed by F1 rookie George Russell and the team has struggled at the back of the grid.

Although Kubica self-effacingly suggested "we can skip it" when, ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix, Autosport asked his fellow FIA press conference attendees for their views on Kubica's return to F1, Hamilton and Grosjean spoke in glowing terms.

"I've known Robert probably the longest I would say, we started racing together in go-karts [in the late 1990s]," said five-time world champion Hamilton.

"Robert is one of the most talented drivers I've competed against. I've seen the talent he had. It's still there when you've had it.

"What's remarkable is the strength and determination he's shown particularly through the incident he had.

"Not a lot of people can come from those circumstances and make it back into the sport and deliver against others who don't have the same situation he's been in.

"I think it's been great to have him back, it's definitely not the same scenario as when he was in a more competitive team back in the day, but he's done great this year.

"We need the best talent in the sport and we need them to be as high up as possible creating part of the show."

Grosjean expected to be Kubica's team-mate at the works Renault team in 2010 but was dropped after his half-season in '09.

He was reserve driver for Lotus in 2011 when Kubica had his accident at the start of the year.

Grosjean said: "He's an inspiration for anyone that had a bad experience. "The first time I spoke to Robert was in 2009, in Abu Dhabi I think. We were supposed to be team-mates in 2010 and I was very, very much looking forward to it.

"It didn't happen, but the next year I followed Robert as the reserve driver when he had his accident.

"The way he came back...To come back to the highest level and fight the way he fought back is very impressive."

shares
comments
Ricciardo: Vettel only needs one F1 race to rebound from slump

Previous article

Ricciardo: Vettel only needs one F1 race to rebound from slump

Next article

Formula 1 future "out of my hands" after Haas snub - Hulkenberg

Formula 1 future "out of my hands" after Haas snub - Hulkenberg
Load comments
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates Plus

Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates

For the second time in 2021, McLaren will line up for the start of a grand prix from the first row. It knows it has the chance of “glory” if things go well for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at the start of the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but even if they just maintain their grid positions, signs from the rest of the Monza weekend suggest success is very possible for Formula 1’s other orange army

Formula 1
Sep 12, 2021