February 26, 2021

F1 remembering Hubert on Spa return

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Minute’s silences to be held ahead of Saturday’s F2 race and Sunday’s Grand Prix; Childhood friends and racing contemporaries of Hubert pay tribute at Spa a year on from his death

Last Updated: 27/08/20 1:25pm

F1 and its feeder series will remember Anthoine Hubert during this weekend’s Belgian GP, a year on from the French driver’s death in an accident in an F2 race at Spa.

A minute’s silence will be held before both Saturday’s F2 feature race and the main Grand Prix on Sunday.

F2 has also announced it is retiring Hubert’s car number, 19, from the series as a mark of respect. The number will be incorporated into a logo that all F1, F2 and F3 cars will run this weekend.

Hubert was a highly-rated driver and a member of Renault’s academy programme. He was 2018 GP3 champion and had won two F2 races in what was his first season in the championship directly below F1.

The popular Frenchman was a friend and contemporary of a number of current F1 drivers in the junior categories.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who won his maiden Grand Prix the day after Hubert’s accident, has said he is racing this weekend for the memory of his friend.

“The Spa-Francorchamps circuit has a special place in my heart. While it is here that I took my first win, it is also where we lost our friend Anthoine last year,” said Leclerc.

“It will be difficult to return to this track and he will be in our thoughts all weekend.”

Pierre Gasly, a close childhood friend of Hubert, laid flowers in memory of his countryman on the opening day of this year’s race weekend on Thursday.

“I had known him since I was seven years old in karting, we were in the same school together organised by the French motorsport federation, from when I was 13 to 19 and we shared an apartment for six years,” said Gasly earlier in the week.

“I think everyone in the paddock will take time to think of him.”

Leclerc also posted a picture of a podium he shared with Hubert and Gasly in 2010 when they were young karters.