4 Comments

Kubica marked out as future champ – but how do you pronounce his name?

BMW are the surprise of the year so far. Yes, everyone thought they would do well, and certainly be in the top three teams (ie 5th and 6th places) but they are instead nearly leading the Formula One World Championship. OK, that’s a bit like being “nearly pregnant” but it is a Boolean variable. Off and on.

And that’s exactly what Kubica has been. Off and On. In Melbourne he was on when he qualified second on the grid, but fell off in the race. In Sepang in Malaysia he actually finished second showing that his team-mate’s second place last week was no fluke. It is also a warning that Kubica is the main danger in the BMW camp, not Heidfeld (although Nick is no slouch).

Heidfeld has been out-qualified by Kubica at every race this season, much like last season. If Kubica had finished in second place last week, not Heidfeld, he would now be the one leading the Formula One World Championship, not his age-sibling Hamilton. They are both just twenty three years old.

Robert Kubica could be the 2008 World Champion if McLaren and Ferrari keep on screwing things up like they have so far shown themselves to be most adept at doing.

But how the heck do you pronounce Robert Kubica’s name? I cannot rely on the people commentating at ITV as anything remotely Continental to them seems to be unpronounceable. I guess James Allen would even have a problem pronouncing Cafe. Oh dear, I’m being naughty again. Well, some people are easy targets. But that’s no excuse. It isn’t his fault. I shall try harder next time.

As for pronouncing Robert Kubica, my best guesses are:

  1. Kubicha (as in Charlie)
  2. Kubitsa (as in bits o’ this and bits o’ that)
  3. Kubika (as in bicker)

I am assuming the “Ku” bit is pronounced like “Coo” as in a dove’s cooing, but I guess it could also be pronounced like “Queue”. Let’s face it, Poland uses a strange spelling system: you only have to see the TV ads for Lodz to understand that (it’s pronounced “Wudge” or something similar). Yes, I know, it’s very weird – but they are lovely friendly people, really. I like them.

Anyone got any ideas? Are there any Poles out there who can tell us, please?

Dobri wieczur…

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4 comments on “Kubica marked out as future champ – but how do you pronounce his name?

  1. Kubica reads as: Coo-bee-tsah (“tsah” as in bits o’this…..)

    As far as pronunciation, just few rules and you got it. Our “w” is pronounced as “v”. As for spelling, English is far more complicated. I am Polish and I homeschool in English, so…. I KNOW!!!

    Thank you for the “lovely” remark for my fellow Poles out there.
    Please, don’t tell jokes about Poles 🙂

    And:
    dobranoc

  2. Thanks for the pronunciation tip. I sympathise with you learning English spelling – there are only general rules, and so many exceptions that it is better to just learn them by heart and develop a feel for them. At least you don’t have to learn if an English Noun is a He She or It… I am learning German and all the Der, Die, Das, Den, and Dems that I have to work into the sentence do my head in! Why they can’t just use “The” for everything I really don’t know!

    Still, at least I am not learning Serbo-Croat or another Slavic language. Is Polish a Slavic language? As in the ending of your Christian name changes depending on the context? We had a client recently who was Russian and had to persuade the local authorities that her surname and her husband’s were the same when they both had totally different endings! The authorities wanted to join them together with a hyphen…

    As for jokes about Poles being stupid, I think that is an American thing. The English make jokes about the Irish in a similar way. Having said that, the word plays available with just the word “Pole” beg so many alternative uses that it is very difficult for an Englishman not to take advantage of the opportunities available… after all, we make jokes about everything and everyone. Humour is our way of coping with the world, and you should hear the things we say about ourselves! Wit, sarcasm, irony, satire, humour, all of these we use regularly.

    So, if I am tempted into using the odd juxtaposition of words and sounds in the future, I apologise in advance – it isn’t meant to be derogatory! After all, you can imagine the opportunities when in F1 the pole sitter is, er, a Pole?

  3. I seem to remember James Allen saying that, in an interview with him, he asked that it be pronounced ‘Queue Bic Ah’, with ‘Bic’ as in Brick and ‘Ah’ as in phonic lower case A.

  4. But how reliable is that? Do you remember James Allen saying that is what Kubica said, or did you actually hear Kubica say it? I mean, James Allen can’t even get adverbs right in English…

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