Robert Kubica, Williams, Yas Marina, 2018

Kubica’s injury ‘not a factor’ anymore for Williams

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: Williams is completely satisfied Robert Kubica has recovered sufficiently from his arm injury to be able to race in Formula 1 again, according to chief technical officer Paddy Lowe.

What they say

Williams chose to hire Kubica for the 2019 F1 season after considering the potential effect of his recovery from the injuries he suffered in his 2011 rally crash.

It’s clearly something we had to consider in the selection because you can’t pretend that’s not a potential issue. But now we’ve made our decision and we’re confident that Robert is absolutely top-class and ready to return to Formula 1.

I don’t even think about it anymore. It’s just not a factor. Robert’s our driver, he’s 100% competent, he’s 100% committed, we’re 100% committed and we’ll just go with that.

Nobody will be even thinking about these issues. Maybe other people from outside may bring it up but it’s not even in our minds.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

How will Liberty Media implement major changes for 2021 when teams are putting up such resistance?

I would like to see how 2019 and how possible changes for 2020 would be received.

By now, minor changes are taken as a kidnap negotiation. Mercedes: nobody touches my engine; Red Bull: nobody touches my aero; Ferrari: nobody touches my money.

Nothing at the moment shows that 2021 would bring us new cars and competition.
Gus Maia

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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40 comments on “Kubica’s injury ‘not a factor’ anymore for Williams”

  1. Track, though, slightly white in run to T1.

    Secret Pirelli winter tyre test, @DieterRencken?

    Is this how Liberty will expand the calendar to 25 races – festive season races in under-served Nordic zones?

    1. @jimmi-cynic Highly unlikely.

  2. Much had been written about Kubica’s injury, but I have only recently seen a video with him and that arm seems to be quite severely compromised…I cannot believe that it’s all perfectly well and it won’t become a factor sometime during the season. There were other handicapped drivers in the past…leg amputee Bill Schindler competed in Indy 500! Archie Scott-Brown also had measurable success with deformed hand. But those guys were driving over 60 years ago…one would think that today’s steering wheel demands are little different. Not that I would mind being proven wrong, though…

    1. @gpfacts do you have a link to that video? I’d be interested to see it too.

      1. Unfortunatelly no, it was something I came across couple of weeks ago, but I don’t remember where exactly.

      2. @gongtong no need to. Just google “robert kubica arm” to find some pics.

        1. @m-bagattini alas that didn’t satiate my curiosity one bit. A static image doesn’t shed much light on the issue.

    2. Johnny Herbert had a pretty successful career in F1 despite his injuries (which cause him pain to this day). We’ll all know whether Robert is able to compete at this level after the first few races of 2019…

  3. Fikri Harish (@)
    19th December 2018, 2:51

    Hey @keithcollantine, I can’t believe you missed this tweet from the official F1 account.

    Right, so those are a collection of F1 broadcast soundbites but applied and animated to everyday situations.
    The one with Gasly asking if there’s fire behind and Grosjean’s “I think Ericcson hit us” is especially hilarious. If I’ve been somewhat ambivalent on F1’s embrace of the internet, I’m definitely on board with it now.

    1. That is gold!

      Thanks for sharing.

    2. @marinatedmonolith – whoa, that was awesome!

      “Eclair” 😁

    3. That is absolutely brilliant! Thanks @marinatedmonolith, I would have missed that.

    4. Thanks for drawing attention to it@marinatedmonolith, saw it yesterday evening just before I went to sleep, I am sure I had some creative dreams.

      As someone pointed out in a tweet, we need a follow up with the ‘Kimi you’re not going to have the drink’ at the least. Hope they continue stuff like this.

    5. Absolutely gold, thanks @marinatedmonolith.

      Perfect time for me to petition a return of the Caption Competition.

      1. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
        19th December 2018, 11:12

        Should bring it back for the off-season :D

  4. Max Verstappen says he had no preference for who should replace Daniel Ricciardo but did advise team bosses ‘what will work and what won’t work’.

    Sounds to me like he may have advocated against signing Sainz for Red Bull, as they did have a fractious relationship at Toro Rosso.

    1. @mashiat

      He must have advocated for a lot of things as well. Its an extreme case but imagine Ferrari being more driver neutral than Redbull next year. !!

      1. I seriously doubt Red Bull will have to take any action. Gasly isn’t top class exactly.

  5. R.I.P. Jean-Pierre Van Rossem, the eclectic former team owner who once called Jean-Marie Balestre a Nazi (Balestre had ties to Vichy France and the Nazis during WWII) and Bernie Ecclestone a Mafia crime boss during a public press conference at the Spa ‘89 GP weekend. He apparently also burned his Porsche road car in the middle of Brussels after he revealed on Belgian TV (against the wishes of the German manufacturer) that his team got Porsche engines for the 1990 season; needless to say the German manufacturer then withdrew their power plants from Van Rossem’s team.

  6. but did advise team bosses ‘what will work and what won’t work’.

    That’s effectively the only preference you need as a driver.
    I anticipate a lot of sparks between max and in the second half of 2019.
    Pierre will just have to withstand i guess.

  7. I wish people would stop getting offended by everything people say and forcing those sane people into making false apologies for it.. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion about anything, good or bad.. If he said Stevenage smells like sewage, but in fact it didn’t, who cares, he and everyone else is aloud to say their own view on it.. Off track but my mate doesn’t like Christmas, I don’t beat him up about it or cry to twitter, his opinion.. One thing he doesn’t do is apologise for not liking it! So much more respect in sticking by what you say, even if you bend a few (unimportant) noses out of joint!

    1. That was kinda the beautiful thing about this apology. He corrected himself at the time for his poor choice of words. Words he didn’t mean. But it wasn’t enough because people are always looking for an excuse to give the guy a hard time. This response “it’s negative energy. Let it go” is perfect, reminding those people that the problem is THEIRS.

      I understand why Hamilton has been disliked. He rubs me the wrong way sometimes. But these young athletes and actors miss out on valuable, normal social skills when they’re promoted to stardom when the rest of us are cocking things up in private.

      The new Lewis is a brilliant thing. He seems to have put the icing on the cake by getting comfortable in his own skin. With this, to me, he seems the complete package and set to become even more dominant with it. Big love to him from a rollercoaster fan/detractor.

    2. As I wrote in yesterday’s round-up, this wasn’t even a case of people being offended, it was people choosing to ignore the fact he’d immediately corrected himself in order to act offended. Which I think is contemptible.

      1. I had originally embedded Hamilton’s video apology from Instagram on the page but he’s deleted it now, so I’ve uploaded the copy I shared on Twitter.

        1. I wasn’t offended by LH using the slum word, I merely found it consistent for him. Yeah he immediately backtracked on the remark, and if this was the first time he had implied something about his upbringing it wouldn’t have gotten a mention. But let’s face it there have been a number of times when LH has spoken of his ‘poorness’ growing up, and I have always felt that truly poor people don’t get to go go-karting, let alone enough that they get somewhere with it. I think LH gravitates toward self-promoting himself to be a rags to riches story, and I don’t believe he ever had it that tough growing up. I think as a rapper he needs/wants the street cred that comes with many of the true rap artists plights as they truly grew up around gangs and drugs, not go-kart tracks. He is doing great at branding himself within and without F1, and to me making himself sound as poor as possible growing up is just part of that.

          1. @robbie …don’t speak on things you clearly don’t understand; ignorance may show. Some of the biggest names in hip-hop come from middle class backgrounds and speak nothing of “street cred”. Not to mention just about every rapper [with any amount of sustained success] not only leaves their former street life behind, but speak on how others can do it too and also tells the next generation not to follow in their footsteps to begin with. Also what is a true rap artist? No true scotsman fallacy much? This mindset of what poor people are basically allowed to do/not do is not only harmful, but it says more about the person holding such an odious ethos, than it does, let’s say, about a person using government assistance but ‘has an iPhone’.

          2. There goes Robbie expressing his middle class white man reasoning to the lived experience of Hamilton.

            He grew up poor, his dad worked 4 jobs to keep him racing karts, he slept on s sofa, it’s all documented, but I guess that’s not good enough for you.

            He got somewhere with it because, well we all know that story.

          3. Poor is poor and that is not how LH grew up. Poor would be a father unable to get a job at all. Someone who happily takes a selfie of himself in Haiti should know what poor is, and there are poorer than Haitians in the world too. Did LH have food? Did he have shelter and a sofa? A father that cared? Did he go-kart until he was discovered? Yeah, that’s not privileged, but it is certainly not poor. And I think LH knows it, which is why he immediately backtracked on a word that left his tongue.

          4. @robbie

            “Poor is poor”

            “Poor would be a father unable to get a job at all”

            Do you know how ridiculous you sound? Poor people still have jobs. Poor people still have a roof over their heads. Poor people still have fathers and mothers who cares for their children.

            Stop with your middle age white man explanation. You can’t apply your interpretation or which level of poor best suits Lewis.

          5. I think you know there are truly poor people in the world that are far worse off than LH likes to portray he was growing up. My age and my skin colour is just what it is, and does not affect my awareness of what truly poor truly means, and it is not what LH experienced growing up.

          6. @robbie

            Your age and skin does affect the way you think.

            Lewis, his father, his brother etc told you what they experienced as a family growing up and that they were poor. But for you a middle aged white man, that’s not good enough, because they could afford to go karting, hence they/he wasn’t ‘poor’. Their story is out there and it fully details the things and sacrifices they made to keep him going. That’s what he experienced, so how dare you then say it wasn’t?

            Like I said before, you sound absolutely ridiculous!

  8. So 23 is going to be Albon’s F1 race number. The first time #23 is going to be used in F1 since the implementation of the current system of drivers choosing their racing numbers themselves ahead of 2014.

    Next season, VB needs to avoid having the type of in-race slumps he’s had over the first two seasons at Mercedes if he’s to stand a realistic chance at remaining at the team beyond next season.

    Interesting COTD especially the ”Mercedes: nobody touches my engine; Red Bull: nobody touches my aero; Ferrari: nobody touches my money” part.

  9. Why do the RB people seem to find the need to denigrate Renault at every turn. It feels like it is at least once a week that they have a go at Renault.

    RB moved on from Renault. I understand why too and agree with it. Renault have been disappointing in this engine era.
    But doesn’t just the action of moving on say everything that needs to be said about what they think of Renault. Why burn the bridges?

    While RB and Renault were still partners, I actually understood why RB publicly chided Renault. Renault were getting no better and they hope publicly embarrassing them forced Renault into action. There was a bit of reason to it and they hoped it may have delivered some results.

    But now… what is the reason for this? How does it help them? I can find no benefit. In fact I can’t only find risk for them next year. Imaging Honda delivers a decent engine next year, but RB stuffs up the new aero rules and the car is off the pace. Everyone in the paddock will be laughing at them. And for those that say that won’t happen. You only have to look to the start of 2017 to find a recent example of RB getting it wrong. If they hadn’t criticised Renault at every turn, people would let a poor start to 2019 slide. But they won’t now. A large amount of people will actually delight in the seeing them fail.

    Silly stuff RB. Keep quiet and let next years result justify your decision.

    I will leave you with this. A wise man once said… nothing.

    1. It was a reaction on remarks made by abiteboul earlier this week.

  10. I’m going to qualify this right from the start by saying I’m a fan of Valtteri Bottas, but:

    I just can’t see the reason why so many people are calling for him to be replaced by Esteban Ocon. No, he didn’t win a race in 2018, but the reasons for that are very well documented. The true measure of an F1 driver is their pace over one lap and I’m sorry, he has that in spades. His average quali deficit to Hamilton is 0.15 of a second (according to Autosport’s rankings) which, when you consider who Lewis Hamilton is and what his skill set entails, is mightily impressive. I fail to see what Ocon would offer Mercedes that Bottas doesn’t. Bottas has proved he is fast, he has proved he will play the team game when necessary and he has proved he can get results when Hamilton is off the boil (which happens incredibly rarely these days). On top of that, the team seem to be completely comfortable with him and talk of him in glowing terms (“Valtteri’s an extremely good qualifier but you’re comparing with Lewis and Lewis is extraordinary. Valtteri has put together some incredible laps. To outqualify Lewis at all is quite an impressive achievement.” / “Lewis sets an incredibly high bar. Valtteri’s strong performances arrived at the wrong time in a way – in Austria, with the car stopping and Sochi with the team orders. And the other one was Baku, which was about as unlucky as I’ve seen a driver be.” Andrew Shovlin – Mercedes trackside engineering director).

    In contrast, Ocon has shown he is willing to risk colliding with his team mate and has shown poor judgment in wheel to wheel combat from time to time. The result of the WCC this season would be no different if Ocon was in the seat, so why risk the agro?

    Ocon is a mighty talent, no mistake, but he should not be in a Mercedes in 2020.

    1. I’m not disagreeing with you but whenever I see this comment (BOT v. OCO – you’re not the first…) nobody mentions this fact:
      Assuming Mercedes stay for a few more years (which can never be taken for granted) they will eventually need a HAM replacement. BOT might not be the answer, certainly not by then. However, OCO might well be…
      It’s another angle.

      1. I was going to mention that, but my comment seemed long enough already so I left it out.

      2. Yes, but I’m not sure ocon can be good enough to replace hamilton, even at the peak of his powers, so if red bull keeps being a good enough car to keep verstappen there and so does ferrari with leclerc and vettel (if he doesn’t repeat 2018) they could perhaps get ricciardo, not sure he has what it takes to do hamilton’s job but surely would be annoyed with a never improving renault.

  11. Did anyone else find it coincidental that Albon is racing under the number 23 after ditching Nissan whose number is historically 23 because of what 23 is in Japanese? Is he still racing for Nissan in a way? Just funny that it would happen that way…

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