This weekend Renault F1 driver Robert Kubica suffered serious injury while participating in a rally race in Italy. He suffered major trauma to the right side of his body and had lengthy surgery to reattach his right hand. With the F1 season kicking off in Bahrain in a little over a months time, Renault team Principal Eric Boullier has taken some heat for allowing his lead driver to participate in such dangerous activities as rallying so close to the start of the Formula One season.
Boullier defended his decision saying,
He just as easily could have been knocked over by a bus. Robert is a racer, he loves cars and lives for nothing but racing…it was agreed among us that Robert would do rallies as well as F1. It was vital for him. His strength comes from that passion.
On this subject I must agree with Boullier. Many team principals since the accident have commented how they would never allow their drivers to compete in such dangerous side pursuits while racing for them in F1. But I love that Kubica was doing rallies, I am sad that he has been hurt, but I think it is a good thing Boullier allowed him to do what he wanted.
As far as the question if F1 drivers should be allowed to pursue other dangerous sports, I say that yes they should. Kimi going rallying, Kubica rallying, racers from other series branching out to Le Mans and Grand Am racing, to me it is a good thing. To stop them from doing so is putting a limitation on their freedom, something they have given up much of just to get to F1 in the first place. Don’t take the rest of it away from them. After terrible accidents it is commonplace for the public to shy away from dangerous and challenging pursuits, this is what has given rise to the overbearing nanny state we live in today. But if we deny ourselves that which we desire because of possible negative consequences we deny ourselves the joy of life. And doing that is the gravest mistake of all.