Robert Kubica, Poland’s first and so far only Formula 1 race driver, achieved the best time of all the drivers at the Formula 1 test classification in Barcelona on February 26th.
The race car driver from Kraków completed a total of 53 laps, finishing in front of some of the world’s best race drivers such as Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel.
Driving for Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen, Mr. Kubica achieved an average lap time of 1:16.942, with the Frenchman Pierre Gasly and Thai Alexander Albon finishing second and third respectively.
It was the Pole’s final test drive before the season begins in March. Over the next two days, the car will be tested by the Swiss-Italian team’s full-time drivers, the Finn Kimi Raikkonen and the Italian Antonio Giovinazzi. Mr. Kubica will serve as the reserve driver for Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen this season.
The last time the Pole appeared at the top of a F1 table was at a test classification in Valencia 9 years ago. It was just before the horrific accident at the Ronde di Andora rally in Italy, in which Mr. Kubica's right forearm was partially severed.
He returned to the F1 circuit in 2019, winning a full-time racing seat for Williams but had a difficult season, struggling with a poor-performing car.
Mr. Kubica announced in mid-February that he will race in the German DTM touring car series, driving a BMW car sponsored by the Polish Oil and petrol giant PKN Orlen.
Robert Kubica is the only Pole to have ever won a F1 race, finishing in first place in the 2008 Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal.