Kubica to race again for Alfa Romeo F1 in Italian Grand Prix

Robert Kubica will race for Alfa Romeo once again at the Formula 1 Italian Grand Prix after stepping in at Zandvoort following Kimi Raikkonen’s positive test for COVID-19.

Alfa Romeo announced on Saturday morning ahead of final practice for the Dutch Grand Prix that Raikkonen had tested positive for COVID-19, ruling him out of the remainder of the weekend.

Reserve driver Kubica stepped in to make his first F1 start since the end of his season with Williams in 2019, finishing in 15th place despite limited practice running.

Raikkonen returned home to Switzerland after his positive result, but Alfa Romeo announced on Wednesday evening that Kubica would be racing again at Monza this weekend.

“Alfa Romeo Racing can confirm that reserve driver, Robert Kubica, will continue to deputise for Kimi Raikkonen at this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix,” the team said in a statement.

“Kimi missed last week’s race in Zandvoort after testing positive to COVID-19 and has not yet been cleared for a return to racing. As per health authority requirements, he is still isolating in his home.

“Robert, who performed admirably in the Netherlands after stepping in at short notice before FP3, will return to the car alongside Antonio Giovinazzi.”

"First of all, I want to share my best wishes for Kimi,” said Kubica.

“I hope he makes a full recovery and returns to the cockpit soon. I am looking forward to racing in Monza, an incredible track in which I claimed my first podium, in 2006.

“Unlike Zandvoort, it is a track I know well and this will help, particularly since the Sprint Qualifying weekend format means we will be one practice session short.

“I am happy with what I did in Holland and I can’t wait to help the team out one more time in Monza.”

It will mark Kubica’s first full race weekend in F1 since the 2019 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, when he ended his comeback season with Williams before linking up as Alfa Romeo’s reserve for the following year.

Kubica also scored his first F1 podium at Monza back in 2006 with BMW Sauber, the team that has since evolved into Alfa Romeo.

The Pole said after the race at Zandvoort last Sunday that he would be “much better prepared” for Monza if he got the call to replace Raikkonen again.

But he faces a similar window in which to get up to speed ahead of qualifying, given there is still just one hour of practice before Q1 begins on Friday evening, owing to the sprint race weekend format at Monza.

“I was told yesterday that I'm also a bit unlucky, because it's a different format,” Kubica said last Sunday.

“What I need is a time in the car before going to qualy and if I have to race in Monza, there will be one hour free practice. So again, in case if it's happening it will not be easy one, but I think I showed today that I use my head.

“I think especially in these circumstances, it's better to lose couple of tenths and stay on the track. There is no magic in this sport. It is nearly impossible to jump in and be on the pace.”

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Why Alex Albon is the right pick for Williams F1
Previous article

Why Alex Albon is the right pick for Williams F1

Next article

Todt “blames himself” for cancelled F1 race protocols

Todt “blames himself” for cancelled F1 race protocols
Load comments
The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes Prime

The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton...

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Prime

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Prime

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Prime

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Motorsport.com's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer Tim Wright explains.

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison Prime

How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells Stuart Codling about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Prime

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as Ben Anderson discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren Prime

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren

From being lapped by his own teammate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Prime

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing wind tunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021