The career of Formula One rising star Robert Kubica is currently in the hands of Italian surgeons after the Polish driver crashed at high speed in a rally event over the weekend.
The 26-year-old was driving a Skoda Fabia in the Ronde di Andora Rally in Liguria, northwestern Italy, when his car left the road and crashed into a church wall.
Kubica has serious injuries to his right arm and leg and has limited use of his right hand. He previously injured the same arm in 2003 in another road accident, and required titanium bolts to be inserted to stabilise the shattered bones.
His manager, Daniele Morelli, told reporters that surgeons at the Santa Corona hospital in Pietra Ligure were trying to restore functionality of his right hand.
“They have restarted the circulation of blood and repaired the bone structure,” Mr Morelli said.
“They must now think about the muscle function, but Robert has a very strong temper and will succeed.”
Kubica’s co-driver, Jakub Gerber, was unhurt in the accident.
The Formula One driver was set to commence his sixth season in the championship this year, but it is now unknown when, or if, he will make a return.
It is expected that Lotus Renault reserve driver Bruno Senna will fill his seat at the opening race in Bahrain on March 13.
Kubica has one Formula One race win to his name, the 2008 Canadian Grand Prix, and finished eighth in the 2010 Drivers’ Championship.
Messages of support from fellow drivers filled Twitter overnight, all praising the driver and the man.
Timo Glock: “I’m thinking of Robert, wish him al the best and hope to see him soon on the track and especially off-track as a friend.
Fernando Alonso: “Let’s all support Robert Kubica, who suffered an accident. Besides a great driver, he is a great person.”
Rubens Barrichello: “I would like to ask for your best wishes to Kubica. He is being operated [on] right now. We all like him and he deserves all the best.”
Our thoughts are with Robert and we wish him a speedy recovery.