Robert Kubica may be ruled out for the entire year after his crash
After his crash while rallying, the injuries sustained by Robert Kubica could take up to a year to heal, doctors say.
He lost control of his Super 2000 Skoda Fabia, hit a wall, and the crash barrier penetrated the cockpit of the car. He suffered multiple fractures to his right arm, leg and hand. He has been in surgery up to a few hours ago.
There were initial fears that his hand would have to be amputated, after a huge amount of blood loss, but doctors say that his hand is safe – for the moment.
Dr. Igor Rossello, a surgeon with a specialty in hand injuries, told the media:
"We need to wait for a week at least to verify whether the hand survives. The nerve
lesions are the ones that leave us with the most question marks over the recovery of
Rehabilitation will be relatively long, probably one year. He came here with
multiple traumas, with several associated injuries. He won't necessarily have to
undergo further surgery on the hand, but he will if needed."
Regarding Kubica returning to racing, he stated:
"One year is the best provision.
I think it is quite difficult now, but you never know. Drivers are always very
special patients. I have a lot of motorbike patients and they heal in a much
faster way - faster than normal people."
Kubica’s co-driver Jakub Gerber avoided injury from the crash, although he said that he did not know what caused the Poe to lose control of his car:
"We were on the first four kilometres of the first special stage. I was looking at
the notes and didn't notice that the car was skidding. Only when we crashed I saw
Robert holding his arm, and after a few moments he lost consciousness.
Robert isn't just a great driver, he is a friend. I just hope he can recover soon."
Some have criticised Renault for allowing Kubica to go rallying, particularly just before the start of the season. However, team principal Eric Boullier defended the decision:
"We've let him do it because rallying is what he loves to do. Rallying is vital for
Robert and for his sanity. Besides that, there is a reciprocal agreement. We knew
the risks and so did he. We didn't want a robot or a corporate man for a driver."
The following is a press conference a few hours ago: (note Fernando Alonso at the start of the video, he visited the hospital where Kubica is)
Update: Renault have released the following statement:
“Robert Kubica underwent a seven-hour operation at the Santa Corona Hospital in
Pietra Ligure this afternoon. The Lotus Renault GP driver had been diagnosed with
multiple fractures to his right arm and leg following a high-speed accident at
the Ronda de Andora rally this morning. He also suffered severe cuts to his
forearm, which could have an impact on his right hand mobility.
Doctors are reasonably satisfied with the way the operation went. Tonight, Robert’s
condition remains stable but serious. He has been placed into an induced coma and
could be woken up in the morning.
Professor Mario Igor Rossello, Director for the Regional Centre of Hand Surgery
at San Paolo Hospital in Savona: ‘It has been a very important and difficult
operation. Robert Kubica’s right forearm was cut in two places, with significant
lesions to the bones and the tendons. We did our best to rebuild the functions of
the forearm. It took seven doctors, split into two teams and a total of seven
hours to complete the operation. One team was the emergency task force from the
hospital of San Paolo (Savona) that is normally appointed to treat this sort of
injury, while the other team came from the orthopaedic department of the Santa
Corona Hospital (Pietra Ligure). At the end of the operation, Robert’s hand was
well vascularised and warm, which is encouraging. Following the surgery, Robert
Kubica will remain under permanent monitoring overnight because his condition
Eric Boullier, Team Principal and Managing Director of Lotus Renault GP: ‘The
news of Robert’s accident came as a real shock to the whole team. All of us, at
Lotus Renault GP, wish him a quick recovery. We have been really impressed with
the way the doctors looked after him today and we would like to thank the whole
team of the Santa Corona Hospital for their professional approach and dedication.
I will be travelling to Italy tomorrow, along with Vitaly Petrov, in order to see
Robert and tell him that we are impatiently waiting for his return.’
Another update will be made tomorrow morning at 9h30, at the hospital, by
Professor Rossello and Daniel Morelli, Robert’s manager.”