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What’s The Greatest Comeback Story In Motorsports History?

Illustration for article titled What’s The Greatest Comeback Story In Motorsports History?

Polish F1 driver Robert Kubica won the first race he entered after 20 months of being in and out of hospitals following a near-death crash. That's amazing.


You might not know Kubica's name. He's most famous for a shocking crash at Canada in 2007, not for his sole F1 victory there the next year. In February 2011, he crashed a rally car into a guardrail at high speed, nearly severing his arm. He was stuck in the car for over an hour and has since spent 20 months in and out of various hospitals. This kind of crash can easily prove fatal.


Kubica's been missed greatly by all the F1 teams. Everyone knows he was a championship driver and Ferrari still keep him in their pit box. He's the only driver they do that for, and he never even drove for them.

Even though he still does not have full mobility in his right arm, Kubica won all four stages of the Italian Ronde Gomitolo di Landa rally. Now that he's won the first race he's entered since his crash, we have to ask, what's the greatest comeback after a crash in motorsports history?

(QOTD is your chance to address the day's most pressing automotive questions and to experience the opinions of the insightful insiders, practicing pundits, and gleeful gearheads that make up the Jalopnik commentariat. If you've got a suggestion for a good Question of the Day, send an email to tips at jalopnik dot com.)

(Hat tip to Axis of Oversteer!)

Photo Credit: Associated Press

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Juan Manuel Fangio. 1957 German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring. Fangio had pole in a Maserati but quickly dropped to third behind two Ferraris. He regained it but after a disastrous pitstop, he was left 50 seconds behind them, leaving the two drivers under the prancing horse, Collins and Hawthorne, feeling very comfortably in the lead. However, Fangio, was not pleased. Over the nest 22 laps he broke the lap record 11 times. With two laps remaining. Fangio passed Hawthorne for the win. It's not so much a story on par with a racer recovering from a brutal accident. But it's one of the best performances in Formula 1 history by one of the greatest drivers who ever lived. It deserves it's legendary and mythical status.