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Former Teammate Opens up on Robert Kubica After his Accident

Former Teammate Opens up on Robert Kubica After his Accident

Robert Kubica

Robert Kubica is set to make a miraculous return to F1 with Williams in 2019, eight years after suffering catastrophic injuries that nearly ended the Pole’s career.

Kubica was recognised as one of the best drivers of his generation before an accident during the Ronde di Andora rally left him with life-changing injuries including partial amputation of his right arm and compound fractures to his right elbow, shoulder and leg.

Nick Heidfeld, who was Kubica’s team-mate at BMW Sauber for four seasons, has revealed that the 34-year-old kept himself isolated from members of the racing community in the aftermath of his incident.

“After his big crash I didn’t manage to contact him, and from what I’ve heard some other people had the same issue, for which I don’t blame him,” Heidfeld exclusively told Express Sport.

“It’s difficult to imagine what goes through your mind, what you feel and what pressure you have after such an incident.

“Having a good career ahead of you in F1 then everything looks lost, and then to come back and make it into F1 is very impressive so I wish him all the best.”

Heidfeld stood in for Robert Kubica at Renault during the 2011 season and was a match for the new Williams driver during their time at BMW Sauber, outscoring his team-mate during the 2007 and 2009 campaigns.

The German veteran is now advisor to the Mahindra Formula E team, having competed with the Indian outfit in the all-electric series since the inaugural 2014/15 season.

Heidfeld will offer a steady presence to new arrival Pascal Wehrlein, who competed in Formula E for the first time at the Marrakesh ePrix.

The former Mercedes protege, who competed in F1 with Sauber and Manor, was unable to take part in the first event of the season due to contractual obligations with the manufacturing giant.

Wehrlein immediately showed pace despite his lack of running by qualifying seventh but was forced to retire on Lap 1 after being hit from behind by Audi driver Lucas Di Grassi.

Heidfeld believes the Brazilian’s actions should have been looked into by the race stewards, who were accompanied by Red Bull star Max Verstappen this weekend.

“He [Wehrlein] was just unlucky in the race and couldn’t do anything about it,” said Heidfeld.

“I am a bit surprised that it was not investigated. We all know that on the start most things can happen and it’s always very tight, but if you look on the TV Lucas [Di Grassi] came from nowhere and just took us out.

Robert Kubica and Nick Heidfeld

“It doesn’t help missing the first race in a series so that makes it even more positive that he kept his head down, kept calm and did a very good performance in qualifying.”

Wehrlein’s team-mate Jerome D’Ambrosio enjoyed a storming afternoon, working his way up from 10th on the grid to win after the BMW Andretti duo of Antonio Felix da Costa and Alexander Sims collided when set for a one-two finish.

“We’re looking very good and leading the championship with Jerome, so that’s a very positive sign,” said Heidfeld.

“If we’re realistic we haven’t been the quickest car here or in Saudi Arabia, but we’ve been very strong.

“I think even without the BMWs crashing there was a chance for us to fight for the win. We’re in a very strong position and there are some things we can improve on in various areas.”

Formula E returns in two weeks when the championship heads to Chile and the streets of Santiago, while Robert Kubica will make his F1 comeback at the Australian Grand Prix on March 17.

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