If Robert Kubica decides to continue his career in rallying for another year, eventually growing out of WRC2 into the big thing that is the numberless WRC, will his custom-built gearbox system follow? This year he is using a specially adapted gear change system, utilizing levers instead of conventional sequential shifter lever. To ensure that this system is not providing unfair advantage, it’s built so it reacts with a slight but relevant delay. Which means that Kubica is shifting as fast as the drivers with classic push-pull stick. Of course, he also gets to keep his hands on the wheel.
This system was introduced so Kubica can make full use of his right hand, which is still suffering from lack of mobility. Robert says that some of the damage may never be repaired, but he also says that the process of recovery is still very much alive. He did not give up on his ultimate goal, the Formula 1, and for that he’ll need a hand that is able to cope with the nature of the F1 cars and tracks.
The 2014 WRC drivers lineup is a pretty hot topic these days and Robert Kubica is very much part of the show in which we like to put our favourite drivers in manufacturer or other top teams. Whether he ends up driving for Citroën or some other top team (despite the French squad recent denials of full WRC programme for Kubica), the question about the gear shifter still remains – is Robert’s arm fit to leave the steering wheel and deal with the conventional shifter, or is he going to ask for a special system to be transferred from the current WRC2 specced DS3 to the WRC car of his choice? Well, don’t ask me, I’m asking you!