Formula 1

Renault taking Kubica Testing Programme ‘very seriously’

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Cyril Abiteboul admits Renault are taking Robert Kubica's recent tests very seriously - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Robert Kubica completed a second day of testing with the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team on Wednesday, completing 90 laps of the Circuit Paul Ricard, but Cyril Abiteboul reiterated that the Pole is not in contention to return to a race seat with the French team – yet.

Kubica had tested first off in Valencia last month at his own request, but Renault allowed him a second day in the car, running this time in the south of France, with the variable circuit layouts making it a more worthwhile experience to measure his performance.

“The Valencia test was on Robert’s request,” said Renault boss Abiteboul to French publication l’Equipe. “He wanted to rediscover the sensations of driving an F1 car, and given the great memories of his time at Enstone we were more than happy to help him in his endeavour.

“We then agreed to continue the evaluation. But this time, the purpose was to really measure his performance, which is why we chose the Castellet.

“Paul Ricard is a lot more demanding than Valencia, with several possible configurations where we could put Robert to the task and test his driving and his physical abilities. We’re taking this very seriously.”

Abiteboul admits that Kubica making a comeback is now in the back of the minds of those at Renault, although at present, he has yet to drive a 2017 hybrid, so there are still questions to be answered before the final decision can be made.

“It’s too early to say of Kubica can come back, but the idea is at the back of our minds,” admits Abiteboul.

“There’s a lot to go through still. He’s only driven a old car, with a down-tuned engine and demo tyres. There’s no race stress involved.”

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