Formula 1

Kubica: Spray from Magnussen hitting kerb caused Brazil crash

Williams Formula 1 driver Robert Kubica says water thrown up from a kerb by Kevin Magnussen triggered his heavy crash in second Brazilian Grand Prix practice.

Kubica was on his first flying lap of the Interlagos weekend, having given his car to Nicholas Latifi for practice one, when his car snapped out of control in what he called a “nasty way” through the long left-hander at Turn 3. It struck an unprotected armco barrier with the left front.

He only realised after studying a replay that Haas driver Magnussen had thrown water left after the morning’s wet session onto the otherwise dry track.

“I didn’t understand in the beginning what happened,” said Kubica.

“I lost the car in a very, very nasty way, and very late in the corner.

”But after reviewing images there was a Haas in front of me, a few seconds in front of me.

“He went completely wide over the kerb and pulled out a lot of water, and you can see from from the video that when I’m approaching with the front left tyre I’m lifting a lot of water, but it was already too late.

“And combined with the hard tyres, first lap, all these factors put together put me into the wall.

“I was I was completely shocked by what happened, completely unprepared.

“But you know it’s difficult to be prepared in such a situation you cannot prevent, and I think it was a very unlucky situation.

“I only understood when I saw images, I thought something broke, but it didn’t break. I just lost it completely over the water.”

Kubica said the impact probably looked worse to spectators than it felt in the car.

“Actually from inside the car it didn’t feel massive,” he said.

“From the speed where I went off, I thought I will have bigger impact, but probably the biggest impact was in the front left, and the suspension absorbed and the tyre absorbed quite a lot of impact.

“So actually I bounced back easily. No drama.”

Having not run any flying laps on Friday, Kubica has a lot of catching up to do on Saturday.

”It’s not easy and the situation for sure doesn’t help, and it’s never nice to lose free practice, never nice to actually crash the car,” he admitted.

“But I think today it was just a question of really bad luck, wrong timing, because if I would’ve been closer to him I would’ve seen it, if I would be few seconds later maybe my engineer would have told me.

“So it’s unfortunate. This is motorsport.”

Williams has had an ongoing struggle with a lack of spare parts during 2019, which led to it withdrawing Kubica’s car from the Russian GP at the end of September after team-mate George Russell crashed.

When asked about the spares situation in relation to Friday’s crash, Kubica replied: “It’s not ideal. It’s a shame that in this situation we have to repair the car but that’s how it is.”

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