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Kubica reveals regret over missing 2008 title shot with BMW

  • Published on 23 Jun 2020 13:12
  • comments 0
  • By: Coilin Higgins

Robert Kubica has revealed he still holds regret over missing out on a title chance with BMW Sauber in 2008.

Kubica was a surprise contender with the team for the world championship in 2008, having taken the lead of the championship after his maiden win in Canada and was only two points away from the top as the season reached halfway.

However, with major regulation changes affecting teams for 2009, Kubica dropped back over the second half of the season thanks to the team switching its focus onto the 2009 car, with the title eventually going to McLaren's Lewis Hamilton.

“I have exactly the same view as I did 12 years ago, because in the end I was involved, and I was in the situation where unfortunately I was feeling that this might be our only chance to fight [for the championship],” Kubica told GPRacing.

“We didn’t have the fastest car, this is a fact. Normally the fastest car is winning the championship, but not always.

“For whatever reason – the mistakes of others, doing a better job at the beginning of the season – in the end, without the fastest car, we were still leading the championship.

“You have to use your opportunities because you never know in life when you’ll get a second chance. I met some of the mechanics after 10 years, who were there with me, and they had exactly the same view. And they regret it, because in the end we didn’t get another chance.”

Kubica adamant upgrades would have helped title charge

Kubica, who briefly returned to F1 last year with Williams, explained how he felt that if the team focused more on the current season's car, he may have been able to lead a charge until the end of the season.

Kubica managed a second-place finish at the third last race in Japan, but it was not enough to keep a challenge against title rivals Hamilton and Ferrari's Felipe Massa.

"This is racing, no one was dominating,” Kubica added.

“Ferrari and McLaren were stronger at some tracks than others, but had technical issues and made mistakes. That’s how I came to be leading the championship, and stayed in the fight so long, without the fastest car.

“I remember in Fuji qualifying sixth, with [teammate] Nick [Heidfeld] 16th. We were nowhere with performance. But I led on lap one and finished second. I’m sure if we were racing the parts we’d tested three months earlier, I’d have won that race.

“I still have some regrets about it, but I also feel that I was fortunate to be in this position – because there are many talented drivers who never had that chance.”

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  • Country Poland
  • Date of b. Dec 7 1984 (36)
  • Place of b. Krakau, Poland
  • Weight 72 kg
  • Length 1.83 m
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