Williams in race against time to replace Kubica's chassis
Williams is facing a race against time to get Robert Kubica in to the Japanese Grand Prix as it attempts to build up a new car for him before the race.
The Polish driver crashed out in the early stages of Q1 at Suzuka after dropping a wheel on to the grass on the run down to the start-finish straight.
His Williams car ran off into the barriers and was too badly damaged to get fixed in time for the start of the race.
Williams confirmed immediately after qualifying that it was attempting to build up a new chassis for him, but was facing a tight schedule to do so because of the condensed programme.
A Williams spokeswoman said: “We have parts but it’s a chassis change so huge amount of work. It will be tight but they are doing everything they can and I’m confident they can do it."
Speaking to Sky after the session, Kubica suggested that a number of factors had contributed to the crash.
“It was a high price for a relatively small off,” he said. “I just accelerated opening the lap and probably there were a few factors that contributed to this.
“I put the rear wheel slightly off the track and missed the space and that was over. I was on the grass and the wall came quite quickly. I think there were a few factors which was contributing. I don’t want to go into the details... but all stories started before qualifying.”
As well as Williams working hard to build a car for Kubica, Renault is flat out replacing the parts on Nico Hulkenberg’s hydraulic system that caused the problem that put him out of Q2.
Haas driver Kevin Magnussen, who crashed at the same corner as Kubica, will get a new gearbox for the race - but is set to keep 19th on the grid despite a five-place grid penalty, as 20th-placed Kubica is now due to start from the pitlane.
Damaged Car of Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-19
Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images
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