11 December 2012
Kubica admits no F1 return in short term
Robert Kubica has started to investigate alternative options for satisfying his competitive urges after admitting that an F1 return is as far away as ever.
Robert Kubica has conceded that the chances of him returning to the cockpit of an F1 car in the near future current stand at zero, ruling him out of the still evolving 2013 driver market.
The Pole was seriously injured in an accident in early 2011, breaking his right arm and leg after his Skoda was speared by a barrier during the Ronde di Andora rally. After losing a year of his career to successive operations – which ultimately succeeded in saving his arm – Kubica then suffered a fall on ice at his home, re-breaking his leg and extending his recovery period.
Despite the second leg injury, however, it is the former Canadian Grand Prix winner's arm that continues to cast doubts over his ability to return to F1, with Kubica unable to bend his elbow sufficiently to work within the confines of a single-seater cockpit.
"I was hoping that I'd be back behind the wheel of an F1 car soon, but it didn't work out," the 28-year old told Autoweek magazine, "The main problem is the mobility of my elbow and wrist. I had several operations that were meant to improve this issue, but there's not been a spectacular improvement. I still find it difficult to move my right arm.
"If I can move my arm again, there is a chance that I will return [to F1] but, until that happens, we'll have to see. There's no chance of me coming back to F1 soon."
While Kubica's name has been bandied about as a potential replacement for Lotus' Romain Grosjean as early as next season, and possibly Felipe Massa at Ferrari in 2014, the Pole has managed to sate his appetite for competition by returning, successfully, to rallying, and could prove to have a future in that branch of motorsport, where cockpit room is not an issue.
"I don't know, but I will make a decision very soon," he admitted, revealing that similarly roomy touring or sportscars could provide an alternative option for track competition, "We're talking with people at the moment, and everything will be decided by the end of the year."
Having won regional rallies in a privately-run Subaru, Kubica was offered the chance to run a works Citroen C4 WRC on a couple of end-of-season events, and the French manufacturer has made no secret of its interest in working further with the Pole.
Team boss Yves Matton applauded Kubica's victory on the Rally di Como, which was followed by a dominant, if ultimately unsuccessful, run on the Rallye du Var.
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