Robert Kubica kicked off the first day of preparations for the 2019 season, after covering 26 laps of the Yas Marina track. He announced that this is his last chance to test a few things that Williams still wanted to check.
We did what we had planned – he said after the session. – The results were as we expected, but of course it is better to have them in the data and charts, so that later you can better calculate everything and assess certain situations for the next year. The plan was made, after four months of break driving was not easy, but overall the feeling was fine, so it’s okay.
But does the data show that next year’s Williams will be faster than the current one? That’s a hundred points question – Robert laughs. – It is difficult to predict what will happen in the future, but we must do everything we can from our side and provide as much data as possible from the factory track. Of course, I would prefer to ride a much better rhythm, but sometimes you have to sacrifice these fives to make it better. Let’s hope it will be better.
I am looking forward to the tests on which we hope to do a good job – says Kubica. -There are many things to test. It is important to implement the entire program and hopefully it will happen. Pirelli imports new tires and you need to get to know this specification, because in just two weeks we have to choose tires not only for winter tests in Barcelona, but also for the first four Grand Prix. This is a very important test in this respect and we hope that everything will be good in this respect and we will execute our program.
Kubica is already focused on a specific job, but the story of his return is still alive in the Yas Marina paddock and in other corners of the motorsport world. One of the comments was posted on Twitter by former teammate Nick Heidfeld: “Big congratulations to my former team partner for returning with Williams. Again, I will be watching F1 more often . ” Kubica as a magnet for Heidfeld, attracting him to watch F1? They have not played this yet.
Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, believes that in 2019, Kubica could catch the attention of better teams in the paddock. The Mercedes boss stresses that everyone – obviously beyond Williams – must be confident that Robert is able to meet the challenges of driving a car.
Wolff said: – I think if Robert is able to drive at the highest level, develop Williams and accelerate the car, be strong compared to George Russell, then again, big teams may be interested in it and say, “Okay – we can see that he can still do it, no problem with his hand. ” Everything is possible.
– If Robert blows George in every session and suddenly Williams’ car will be in the eighth position, not eighteenth, I assure you that every big team will look at Robert and ask if he wants to ride for them.
Asked about the current situation of Williams and the chances of digging out of the hole, Wolff described Kubica’s advantages, which also counts Claire Williams. – At the beginning of the season it was clear that their car did not behave as it should, it was very difficult to drive –says the head of Mercedes.– Robert also talked about it. However, I think that Paddy Lowe and his people started working on the new car for the 2019 season very early and the next year’s car will be much faster than this year’s. Robert will also contribute to the development of the car.
I do not think he loses anything of his speed, he is still crazy. He also has excellent technical skills. Already, his contribution to the band is very large, but it looks different, of course, if you do not race. When he rides, his approach to the team will be very critical. If you need it, tell them that the car is real shit and where you need to improve. We love Robert for that. It’s a great thing for the team.