Hubert Hurkacz has hit the gas pedal on his career this season, winning his first ATP Masters 1000 title in Miami and reaching a career-high No. 11 in the FedEx ATP Rankings. It is only fitting that the Pole is a big fan of cars.
The 24-year-old’s passion for them started at a young age, when he enjoyed collecting mini car models.
“I always would ask my parents to get me another one. To be honest, they were a bit tough on me. They didn’t want to get me those,” Hurkacz told ATPTour.com, cracking a laugh. “But since then I loved cars.”
For years, when Hurkacz has passed an interesting car on the road, he has done research to find as much information about it as possible. He remembers first driving a car in his late teens and loving the experience immediately.
“From the beginning, I just enjoyed driving a car, enjoyed fast cars and go karts when I was a kid,” Hurkacz said. “I didn’t go that often. But I really like motorsports and I love Formula 1.”
The 24-year-old has always enjoyed Formula 1. But he became an even bigger fan after watching Netflix’s ‘Drive To Survive’, a behind-the-scenes documentary of a season in the sort.
“I [began to] really follow it every single race, qualifying. I really enjoyed watching,” Hurkacz said. “[There is] such a big process to get the car ready for the race, there’s so much data, so many things.
“The drivers are just insane driving these machines that are so fast.
“I really love McLaren. A couple of weeks ago they had an amazing win. There’s of course Lando (Norris) and Daniel Ricciardo, so, I also really like Charles Leclerc. I like most of the drivers, but I would say those are my favourites.”
There is a Polish Formula 1 driver, Robert Kubica — currently a reserve driver for Alfa Romeo — who overcame a nearly fatal accident a decade ago. Earlier this year, Kubica filled in for former world champion Kimi Raikkonen after the Finn tested positive for Covid-19.
“I’ve never met him personally, that would be amazing if I can talk to him of course,” Hurkacz said. “I was supporting him, I was super happy about the comeback that he made into Formula 1, and now he’s the third driver [for Alfa Romeo].
“It’s incredible after what he has gone through, that he was able to come back. It’s really insane and it’s very inspiring.”
Hurkacz is enjoying his tennis at the BNP Paribas Open, where he will play Australian Open semi-finalist Aslan Karatsev in the fourth round. But before the tournament, he also enjoyed the proximity to nice, clear roads.
That is because Hurkacz is driving a McLaren 720s during the tournament, and he was able to go for a joy ride to recharge before the event. During the US Open, he drove another McLaren.
“Can’t complain about my ride to the US Open this year,” he wrote on social media.
Hurkacz will now hope to accelerate once more as he tries to secure one of the final four spots in the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin from 14-21 November. That pursuit continues on Wednesday against Karatsev.