Jan.23 (GMM) Robert Kubica and his Polish sponsor Orlen may be leaving Alfa Romeo.
Polish oil company Orlen’s prominent backing of the Sauber-run team has been closely aligned with the outfit’s naming partner Alfa Romeo.
But Alfa Romeo is leaving Sauber at the end of 2023, ahead of the Swiss team’s takeover and works collaboration with the Volkswagen-owned carmaker Audi.
Kubica, the team test driver, admitted recently that his role at the team was potentially ending.
“It depends on Orlen and what they want to do next,” said the Pole.
“But it would not be a surprise if I no longer get a seat as an official driver in Formula 1 anymore.”
Meanwhile, the well-known veteran Swiss F1 journalist Roger Benoit also reports that Alfa Romeo is heading into 2023 having still not declared Frederic Vasseur’s replacement as team boss.
Former McLaren boss Andreas Seidl has now started work as Sauber’s new Group CEO, but he will not be the team principal.
In the pages of the Swiss newspaper Blick, Benoit quoted Seidl as saying: “Unfortunately you’ll have to be patient with the announcement of the new team boss.”
As for Kubica’s likely departure, former Ferrari driver Felipe Massa said it will be a loss for Formula 1.
“I was sure that he was going to take my place at Ferrari,” he told the Polish source Swiatwyscigow.
“It wasn’t a problem for me, because he deserved it. So it’s sad that a good driver like him missed an important opportunity for his career.
“I never thought he would race again,” added Massa, referring to Kubica’s horrific injuries sustained in his 2011 rallying crash.