Meet Robert Kubica

21 January 2016

Polish star Robert Kubica is starting 10th on the road as tonight’s first two stages of the Monte Carlo Rally get underway, driving for Italy’s BRC Racing Team. The first crew is scheduled to leave the Principality’s famous Casino Square at 18:15, and over tonight’s two stages, the crews will tackle 41.63 competitive kilometres before returning to service in Gap just before midnight.

So who is Robert Kubica and how has he fared in Monte Carlo in the past? Read on…

Robert Kubica embarks on his fourth year competing in the World Rally Championship in 2016. Formerly a star in Formula 1 and a grand prix winner, the Polish driver began competing in rallying on a regular basis in 2013 after making a comeback to motorsport from serious injuries.

With 14 stage wins in the WRC under his belt, Kubica has quickly established himself as a fast and determined rally driver, having previously made his name in circuit racing.

After racking up multiple karting titles in his native Poland and then internationally, he stood out during his time in the junior single-seater ranks, which culminated in the 2005 Formula Renault 3.5 crown.

His performances earned him a Formula 1 deal with BMW and he made his debut at the 2006 Hungarian Grand Prix. He quickly impressed and finished on the podium in just his third race, at the iconic Monza.

In 2008 – his second full F1 season – he won the Canadian Grand Prix and finished the year fourth in the drivers’ standings. A move to Renault for 2010 led to further plaudits for Kubica, who was by now widely regarded as a future world champion.

However, such ambitions were put on hold by the injuries he sustained in a crash on an Italian rally in February 2011.

Kubica had taken part in his first rally in 2004 and entered them regularly in 2010 alongside his F1 commitments, but an accident on one such event had now put his career under threat. After a lengthy recovery process, it was on a rally in September 2011 that he made a triumphant return to competition, winning the event with a minute in hand over his nearest competitor.

In 2013, he experienced his first full rallying season in the WRC2 class and won the title after victories in Greece, Italy, Germany, France and Spain. Marking himself out as a potential rally superstar with such early success, he also scored WRC points outright on five events, with a best overall finish of fifth in Germany.

His debut in a World Rally Car followed in Wales and in 2014 he took on the full WRC in a Ford Fiesta RS WRC. Having begun the year with victory on the European Rally Championship-opening Janner Rallye, Kubica then won the first two stages on Rallye Monte-Carlo. Points finishes followed in Argentina, Italy and Australia, and he won more stages in Germany and France.

Continuing in his Fiesta in 2015, Kubica this time won four stages on Rallye Monte-Carlo as he tried to recover from early delays. He also won stages on the subsequent events in Sweden and Mexico, before claiming points in Portugal and on home soil in Poland. He led the Tour de Corse after winning the opening stage and claimed two more stage victories in Spain, before finishing the season with further points in Wales.

Kubica begins 2016 by entering Rallye Monte-Carlo in a Ford Fiesta RS WRC prepared by BRC Racing Team, aiming to build upon the promise he’s shown previously on the notoriously tough event.


Kubica ready to start Monte Carlo Rally with BRC

21 January 2016

Ex-Formula One racer turned rally winner Robert Kubica has chosen Italian squad BRC Racing Team for his Monte Carlo Rally bid.

Kubica will drive a Pirelli-equipped Ford Fiesta WRC built by M-Sport. It’s been specially adapted to cope with the limited use that Kubica has of his right arm and the Pole had already sampled his latest machine at a test session near Cuneo, Italy on Saturday, before embarking on the recce that preceded Wednesday evening’s shakedown.

The shakedown, held near Gap in France, was used by Kubica to refine the set-up of his Fiesta, as he completed several runs of the stage in front of thousands of enthusiastic fans who had turned up to see the cars in action for the first time in 2016.

Massimiliano Fissore, BRC team principal, said: “We’re delighted to welcome a driver of Robert’s calibre to our team for this prestigious rally. He’s got off to a very good start with a successful test in Italy, but of course he is one of the fastest and most professional drivers in the sport, so we would expect nothing less. He changed a number of parameters during the test to fine-tune the car to his exact liking. From our point of view it’s been a privilege working with him: while our team has been specialised in the Italian Rally Championship recently, it has the experienced personnel and capability to take on running a World Rally Car at the very pinnacle of the sport – and on the most difficult event of the year. The fact that Robert has chosen us is testament to that, and now we aim to repay him by giving him the best car possible for the rally. The shakedown went well, and now our attention turns to the first two stages this evening.”

The Monte Carlo Rally stages can start off in bright sunshine but then end in full snow, which makes it extremely hard to judge the correct tyre choice in particular. With Kubica showing an instinctive feeling for changes in grip, the entire BRC team – based in Chierasco, northern Italy – is hopeful that he will put in a show-stopping performance once more, having won stages on the event in 2014 and again last year.












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