Kubica quicker lap times than Hulkenberg & Palmer – Will test for Renault

TJ13 reported a number of days ago that Renault are seriously considering swopping out a junior driver for Robert Kubica for the up and coming mid-season test after the Hungarian GP on August 1st & 2nd.

It has now emerged why Renault are even considering such a move. Back in June, Kubica had a qualifying and racing simulation with a 2012 Lotus E20 Renault on the Valencia circuit, about 310 kilometers. On July 11th, a test on the Paul Ricard circuit followed, this time the pole totalled about 500 km.

Sources within the team have now revealed that the Pole has recorded lap times in the simulator quicker than their current driver line up of Nico Hulkenberg and Joylon Palmer. It is for this reason that Renault will be letting Kubica take part in the mid-season test at the Hungaroring in August and if all goes well then he will take the place of Palmer who has zero points thus far.

“Now I know that I can once again be the driver I was before. My level in 2010 was high without being unnecessarily modest and in Valencia I realised that I had the passion like before…. I had recovered it since the 2011 accident,” said Kubica. “Turning corners is different but it is a case of work and if others can do it then there is no reason why I cannot,”

“His comeback will be one of the best pieces of news this year, Robert is the best,” said Fernando Alonso about the best friend

It’s all about how quick the Polish driver will be in a 2017 car. There are still question marks about how well he’d go in a formula designed to tax the physical aspects of driving. The injury sustained by Kubica is shocking to say the least but Renault are confident the adaptions to their car will make it possible for Kubica to drive competitively. That along with the fact that he’s prepared himself together with the former cyclist Alessandro Petacchi, Robert describes himself as being in the best physical condition than ever before.

The 32-year-old Pole had suffered a severe arm injury during a rally in February 2011. Shortly before, he had topped the time-sheets with Renault during winter testing. Kubica was considered an up and coming world champion, Fernando Alonso wanted to bring him to Ferrari just prior to the accident.

It appears the Pole has shown that he can last a whole race and needs to demonstrate that he can record a better time than Palmer in Hungaroring.

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9 responses to “Kubica quicker lap times than Hulkenberg & Palmer – Will test for Renault


  1. https://polldaddy.com/js/rating/rating.jshe has done extremely well considering his arm was nearly totally cut off in the crash, and they re-attached it. also consider he broken legs and other body parts in the crash, he walks with a slight limp since the crash. he also lost so much blood, he was close to death, 2 of his right hand fingers are pretty numb, but his thumb and index finger are strong, meaning he can grip steering wheels well. f1 has power steering, and the most important thing is being physically fit, and Kubica is fitter than ever, and as mentioned in the article doing lots of cycling. he is only 32, and could have 5-6 good seasons in f1, and who knows, maybe win a title? imagine that.

  2. We’ll see. I wonder what an essentially one-armed driver will be like at the end of a full race. And I question putting a driver in a car where all the controls have to be on the left side of the steering wheel.

    • who does not shed a tear for an individual who defies all odds and becomes the unexpected hero?? I do, and I suspect many of you do too. BUT… I suggest this is a mission just outta reach for even a superstar. it is one thing to be blazing fast on a sim or pristine clear open circuit. totally another deal when another has a big issue in front or the chaos of the first couple of corners. even a few of the best sometime have a big issue! I have zero personal insight as to RK’s possible physical limitations, but i kinda sorta believe that ANY physical limitation is just that when competing with others with NO physical limitations. I do NOT agree with the Renault decision to further test RK at the Hungary testing. sorry. just how I see it…

      • Just wait and see what Kubica can do in the test.
        There are more reasons why they put Kubica in the car then just a possible replacement for Palmer this season. If Kubica has demonstrated in the simulation that the car has more potential than has currently shown by the current drivers and he can show it as well on the actual track, the team can ask the higher management to get a bigger budget for an A star driver and it also demonstrates to the other drivers what the team potential is now and what might be in 2018.
        This might just be the show case to hire a replacement for Palmer and to convince the management to spend more money on it.
        I would not be surprised if Kubica will stay at least as a development driver untill next year.

        • Interesting hypothesis if the intent is to go after Alonso. But of more concern to Renault is that if Kubica can show that essentially a one-armed driver who has been out of F1 for 6 years is as fast or faster than their current drivers – it shows that the Renault management really misjudged the capabilities of their current drivers especially Hulkenberg.

    • There really must be some serious potential. These tests are way too costly and important just to do Kubica a favor. I guess Renault have a lot more insight in his current form than anyone else… If they think it is worth it to try, who are we to say its a no good idea..

  3. How do you get out of the cockpit in the required time with only 1 arm? Does the Halo make that harder for him? Those would be my first thoughts…

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