Kubica to cover for recovering Raikkonen at Italian GP

09 September 2021 - 08:08 By Reuters
Robert Kubica will replace Kimi Raikkonen at the Italian F1 Grand Prix.
Robert Kubica will replace Kimi Raikkonen at the Italian F1 Grand Prix.
Image: Clive Rose/Getty Images

Polish driver Robert Kubica will stand in for Kimi Raikkonen again for Alfa Romeo at Monza in Italy this weekend after the Finn continued to isolate due to testing positive for Covid-19.

Raikkonen, the 2007 world champion with Ferrari, also missed last weekend's Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort and the Swiss-based team said in a statement on Wednesday that the 41-year-old had not yet been cleared to return.

“I hope he makes a full recovery and returns to the cockpit soon,” said Kubica.

“I am looking forward to racing in Monza, an incredible track in which I claimed my first podium, in 2006. Unlike Zandvoort, it is a track I know well and this will help, particularly since the Sprint Qualifying weekend format means we will be one practice session short.

“I am happy with what I did in Holland and I can’t wait to help the team out one more time in Monza.”

Kubica finished 15th in that race, one place behind Italian team mate Antonio Giovinazzi.

The 36-year-old Pole raced for BMW Sauber and Renault from 2006 to 2010 and returned to the Formula One grid with Williams in 2019 after a near-fatal rally crash in 2011. Last weekend's race was his first since 2019.

This weekend will be the second time Formula One has experimented with a sprint format, a qualifying session on Friday and sprint race on Saturday to determine Sunday's starting grid.