Robert Kubica Q&A: Im happy my future lies with Renault 29 Oct 2009
As the winter break approaches, theres a lot of uncertainty in the Formula One paddock, with the future plans of several teams and drivers still to be decided. Knowing hes going to race for Renault next year gives BMW Saubers Robert Kubica a certain amount of security and comfort ahead of this weekends season finale in Abu Dhabi. Here Kubica discusses Yas Marina, 2010 and the demise of BMWs Formula One dream
Q: Can you sum up how the season was for you?
RK: I think it has been a difficult season - a season with a lot of difficulties, not only one. The first one was of course the performance of the car. Then another one was the KERS/no KERS situation - first pushing with the KERS car and then switching completely to a non-KERS car. And then another one was about BMW not continuing in F1. So, for sure, many difficult moments. From a driving point of view it was not an easy season. I think I had a few races with very good performance, like in Australia or Malaysia. If you review the Australia race and see where we were with the car, I think it was not so bad, or even the last race in Brazil. When you have a car fighting for P12, as we had in the middle of the season, it's difficult to make an impression. The difficulties to the season started from trying to really concentrate on KERS, which didn't work out for us.
Q: You are one of the few drivers who has his future sorted out for next season. How much of a help is that?
RK: Today, when everything in F1 is quite uncertain with many question marks on drivers and teams, I think I'm very happy that I'm quite well placed for the future with Renault. I'm sleeping well, so that's good, and I'm looking forward to the new challenge. For sure it will be a big challenge because I think Renault is very motivated to come back and put the negative moments behind them. And that's why I think we have a good chance to do well next year. It will be much better for me to test in two weeks' time and know where I stand. Otherwise you'd be just guessing all winter and believing the numbers and just hoping the numbers will be good. As I said, there's a lot of motivation in the team I'm joining and I'm motivated very much for the new challenge, so I think it should be okay.
Q: What are your impressions of the new circuit?
RK: I think it's a different style of circuit. If we talk just about the circuit it's difficult to say because I have not driven it, but it looks interesting, although I think there are two different parts. What are interesting are the three long straights where you will reach around 300km/h and then brake heavily. And then you go on to the other part with low-speed corners. So you have to try to have downforce but also a good top speed.
Q: Do you think this is going to become a classic, real track like Spa or Monza?
RK: I think real tracks are where you pay for your mistakes. I haven't driven here so I cannot say. I'm a big fan of street circuits so you can imagine the more run-off area you give me, the less I like it. But they are safer, so you have to find the best balance. Everything is nice until there's accidents. Once there's an accident, you prefer to have more run-off area, so that's why I'm saying the balance is the most important thing.
Q: How do you feel knowing that your current team may not be in Formula One racing next year?
RK: For sure I'm concentrating on the race, but knowing thats the situation for many people in the team... that's why I say I'm very happy to be well placed for the future, because I understand that for most of the people their future is still uncertain. For sure it's not nice for them and not nice for me, because I have worked with the same people for four years, so your relationship gets closer. You'd like to see them on the grid. I hope we will see them on the grid. Maybe not all of them, because even if the Sauber team continues there will not be as many people as we have now, but I hope they will continue and I hope all the people working at BMW Sauber will get a job they like.
Q: What would you like Jean Todt to do for Formula One racing as FIA President?
RK: To be honest, I don't know exactly what the President's job entails with regards to Formula One, so it's difficult to talk about something I don't know. I believe he will do a good job for general motorsport because we are talking here about Formula One, but motorsport is not only Formula One. Motorsport is much bigger than Formula One, and a lot of people in this paddock are forgetting the lower categories. But I believe he will do a good job.
Q: You are a big rally fan. Sebastien Loeb was hoping to race here, but it wasn't possible and he couldnt get a super licence. Would you have liked to see him in Formula One racing?
RK: First of all congratulations to him for another world championship. It was a close battle. I think it would not be easy for him. I think it would be a very nice challenge, and a nice opportunity, because if I was asked to do the opposite I would enjoy it. Of course I wouldn't go there to compete at the top. He knew he would not compete to win, that's for sure. His approach would be the same as if I do rallying - just enjoy it, take it as a nice challenge and try to do your best, but without any targets. I believe he would struggle, because racing is different than rallying, but it'd be the same if an F1 driver goes to rallying.