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Kubica visits Renault's Enstone factory 18 Jan 2010

Robert Kubica at Renault's Enstone factory, UK, 14 January 2010. © Steve Etherington / Sport Auto / Renault Robert Kubica with Renault team principal, Eric Boullier, at Renault's Enstone factory, UK, 14 January 2010. © Steve Etherington / Sport Auto / Renault Romain Grosjean (FRA) Renault R29 in the second practice session.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 17, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Practice Day, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, UAE, Friday, 30 October 2009 Romain Grosjean (FRA) Renault R29 in the first practice session.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 17, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Practice Day, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, UAE, Friday, 30 October 2009

With the 2010 season just weeks away, Robert Kubica is keen to get to know his new team - Renault - as quickly as possible. And so last week Kubica interrupted his winter break to travel to the UK and pay a visit to the team’s British base at Enstone.

As well as touring the factory and chatting with his new colleagues over lunch, the former BMW Sauber driver found time on Thursday to meet with Renault’s new team principal, Eric Boullier. He also spent time in the wind tunnel watching the latest developments get put through their paces on the rolling road, and the composites lab, inspecting some carbon fibre components.

For Kubica, who last visited the team a few years back when he briefly tested for them, it was exciting to see how much the outfit has grown.

“It was great to return and see how much has changed," he said. "The site is bigger now and there are more facilities such as the CFD centre, which is very impressive and will play a big role in the development of our car this year. When you walk around the factory there is a great atmosphere and everybody seems motivated and up for the fight - just like me!

“So far things are going really well and the factory has given me a warm welcome. It’s still very early days and I need to get to know everybody, but at the moment things are going well. I already have a good relationship with my engineers and we talk on the phone every week as I want to know as much about the new car as possible.”

Although the R30 isn’t ready yet, Kubica was able to sit in a mock-up to try the cockpit out for size. He’ll return to Enstone in a couple of weeks to complete the seat fitting.

“We checked the dimensions and took measurements to make sure I was comfortable in the car,” he explained. “There are some small changes to be made, but no major issues. Later this month I'll go back to Enstone to try out the proper chassis and to have my seat made so that we are ready for the first test."

Kubica will make his first public appearance for Renault later this month when the team launches their new car at Valencia on January 31. Following the presentation, he is expected to make his debut in the R30, as 2010’s first official pre-season test gets underway on the Spanish track the following day.

"The only difficulty I have is being patient enough to wait for it as it has been a long winter out of the car," Kubica concluded. "Valencia cannot come soon enough!"

Until then, he'll continue to prepare for the season and plans to keep his driving skills sharp by competing in this week's Monte Carlo Rally in a Renault Clio R3.