Alfa Romeo ORLEN test and reserve driver Robert Kubica will be back behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car when he completes his first appearance during a grand prix weekend for the Swiss team.
Kubica made a return to Formula One last year when he raced for the Williams F1 Team. Although he secured the Grove-based outfit’s sole championship point in last year’s German Grand Prix, he never felt comfortable in the FW42 and the two parties decided not to continue their relationship.
For 2020, the one-time grand prix winner has been signed as test and reserve driver for the Alfa Romeo ORLEN team. His contract also meant that Orlen, the Polish state-owned oil refiner, has become the title sponsor for the Hinwil-based team.
This weekend’s appearance will be the third time for Kubica to get behind the wheel of the C39 after he completed two successful mornings of running during winter testing in Barcelona. As the field stayed at Spielberg for a second race weekend at the Red Bull Ring, the team, just like Williams, decided to provide its test driver with a test opportunity. Kubica will take part in the session in lieu of Antonio Giovinazzi, with the Italian driver returning to the car for FP2 and the remainder of the weekend.
Kubica said he will try to give his feedback on the car while the Alfa Romeo ORLEN engineers fine-tune the setup of the C39. He said: „I am looking forward to returning to action this weekend, especially after the long break the whole world of motorsport had to observe.”
„My objective, as always, is to provide as much data as possible for our engineers and to give them my feedback from within the cockpit. This weekend will be quite a new experience for everyone, racing in the same venue we were on just a few days ago, so it will be a matter of refining all the data we collected over the course of the Austrian Grand Prix and testing the adjustments we want to make to the cars.”
Team Principal Frederic Vasseur is sure that Kubica can make a positive impact on the development of the C39.”I am looking forward to seeing Robert in the car on Friday.”
„A driver with his experience always comes up with valuable feedback and he’ll be able to help us continue learning about our car. Robert was with the team last weekend, of course, and so he is fully aware of everything that was discussed in the engineering meetings and during each session: it’ll be a chance for him to experience the car by himself and, armed with that knowledge, help us progress further,” he added.