Robert Kubica returns to Formula One eight years after near-fatal crash

...

Posted: Nov 22, 2018 4:23 PM
Updated: Nov 22, 2018 4:23 PM

Robert Kubica has completed a sensational return to the Formula One grid, eight years after the horror crash that nearly killed him.

The Pole will drive for Williams Racing in the upcoming 2019 season, joining the British team alongside George Russell.

Auto racing

Formula One

Motor sports organizations

Motorsports

Robert Kubica

Sports and recreation

Sports figures

Sports organizations and teams

Accidents

Accidents, disasters and safety

Traffic accidents

Claire Williams

Williams Martini Racing

"Firstly, I would like to thank everyone who has helped me during what was a difficult period of my life over these last few years," Kubica said.

"It has been a challenging journey to make it back to the Formula One grid, but what seemed almost impossible is now beginning to feel possible.

"For sure, it has been a long road to get to this point, but as that challenge now comes to an end with this announcement, a new challenge begins working with Williams on track."

Visit CNN.com/sport for more news and videos

Crash

Kubica was competing in the Ronde di Andora rally championship in 2011 when he lost control of his car at high speed and smashed into a roadside barrier.

The then 26-year-old, considered one of the most exciting prospects in the sport, was trapped for more than an hour before rescue workers managed to free him, allowing him to be airlifted to hospital.

It was later confirmed he had required a partial amputation of his right forearm, while also suffering severe injuries to his right elbow, shoulder and leg.

"Being back on the F1 grid next season will be one of the greatest achievements of my life," Kubica said.

"And I'm sure with hard work and commitment we will be able to help motivate the team to achieve good things together. Thank you again to everyone who has supported me and believed in me.

"I will finally be back on the grid behind the wheel of an F1 car, and I cannot wait to get back racing."

READ: Robert Kubica -- 'I'm happy to be back in an F1 car'

READ: Robert Kubica 'emotional' after completing Renault test

Formula One career

Just days before the crash, Kubica had been driving for the Renault Formula One team in preseason testing in Valencia and set the fastest time on the final day.

It was the start of his second year with the team, joining in 2010 after four years with BMW which included victory at the 2008 Canadian Grand Prix.

In August of this year, Kubica told Autosport that he has gradually adapted to his injury and now drives "70% left-handed and 30% right."

Kubica returned to rally driving just two years after the crash and competed in various championships all the way through to 2017, when he made his long-awaited return to F1.

His first step back on the ladder was with his former Renault team in 2017, test driving their 2012 car.

Just a month later, he drove his first modern F1 car since the crash, finishing fourth fastest in testing at the Hungaroring after the Hungarian Grand Prix, just 1.4 seconds behind race winner Sebastian Vettel.

Kubica's impressive performances made him a contender for the 2018 Williams seat vacated by the retiring Brazilian Felipe Massa.

The team instead opted Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin and chose to employ Kubica as a reserve driver behind the scenes.

In May this year, he took part in his first F1 race weekend since the final weekend of the 2010 season, driving in a practice session at the Spanish Grand Prix.

But Kubica will complete his remarkable turnaround when he takes to the starting grid for the opening race of the 2019 season, March's Australian Grand Prix.

"All of us at Williams have been immensely impressed at what he has achieved, and it is a great credit to his strength of character and tenacity to return to Formula One," said Claire Williams, deputy team principal.

"During this season his commitment to the team and the work he has put in behind the scenes has been unwavering, and he has become an established and much respected member of the Williams team.

"He has a level of determination that is remarkable to see; and he truly embodies the Williams fighting spirit.

"Having the consistency of Robert stepping up into this new role will be an important step for us as we look to fight our way back towards the front of the field."

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 115407

Reported Deaths: 3566
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion21196765
Lake10493323
Elkhart6528110
St. Joseph6392106
Allen6178202
Hamilton4848109
Vanderburgh360930
Hendricks2715123
Monroe256036
Tippecanoe239113
Johnson2305123
Clark221457
Porter213647
Delaware194262
Cass19419
Vigo182526
Madison164375
LaPorte142340
Floyd135862
Howard130563
Warrick128038
Kosciusko121617
Bartholomew116457
Marshall100824
Dubois96919
Boone96846
Hancock92143
Grant91934
Noble90832
Henry79826
Wayne75414
Jackson7499
Morgan71638
Shelby67229
Daviess66328
Dearborn66028
LaGrange63411
Clinton59914
Harrison57624
Putnam56412
Knox5159
Gibson5114
Lawrence51129
Montgomery50821
White48514
DeKalb47611
Decatur45839
Miami4353
Greene42435
Fayette42113
Jasper3942
Steuben3807
Scott37311
Sullivan33712
Posey3240
Jennings31312
Franklin30725
Clay3005
Ripley2968
Orange28824
Carroll27413
Whitley2707
Washington2651
Wabash2648
Starke2637
Adams2613
Wells2614
Jefferson2483
Spencer2413
Fulton2382
Huntington2363
Tipton22622
Perry22113
Randolph2167
Jay1800
Newton17311
Owen1681
Martin1640
Rush1554
Pike1471
Vermillion1280
Fountain1232
Blackford1193
Pulaski1131
Crawford1050
Brown1043
Parke962
Benton880
Ohio787
Union780
Switzerland690
Warren391
Unassigned0226

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 148894

Reported Deaths: 4734
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin26704607
Cuyahoga17375656
Hamilton13036315
Montgomery7755162
Lucas7280364
Butler5933111
Summit5265252
Marion308847
Mahoning3053281
Warren302349
Stark2838175
Pickaway264344
Lorain230786
Delaware223120
Fairfield208753
Columbiana192980
Licking191063
Trumbull1883132
Wood184172
Clark179440
Clermont170723
Lake161951
Medina146039
Greene144432
Allen143069
Miami142851
Portage113266
Mercer111918
Erie93546
Tuscarawas93020
Wayne92767
Ross87924
Richland86119
Madison81512
Darke79942
Belmont71827
Geauga71349
Hancock69510
Athens6692
Ashtabula65748
Lawrence65322
Shelby62510
Auglaize5979
Putnam58523
Sandusky56320
Huron5427
Union5292
Scioto4986
Seneca47014
Ottawa46830
Preble43315
Muskingum4012
Holmes3859
Jefferson3364
Henry31213
Logan3093
Champaign3043
Perry2969
Clinton29413
Defiance28911
Brown2882
Knox28415
Washington26023
Morrow2572
Hardin25213
Jackson2506
Fulton2411
Ashland2374
Crawford2366
Coshocton23411
Fayette2306
Highland2273
Wyandot21012
Williams2073
Gallia18913
Pike1840
Meigs17410
Guernsey1698
Hocking1639
Carroll1527
Adams1294
Van Wert1173
Monroe11018
Paulding1080
Harrison633
Morgan470
Vinton473
Noble280
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Broken Clouds
70° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 70°
Angola
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 72°
Huntington
Overcast
64° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 64°
Decatur
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 72°
Van Wert
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 72°
Warm, Summer-Like Weekend
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events