Kubica: Team deserves 'special' podium

Robert Kubica described his second place in the Australian Grand Prix as a 'special' result for the improving Renault team, but warned that it was not the kind of finish the squad could expect in a straightforward race at the moment

Kubica: Team deserves 'special' podium

The Pole made good early progress from ninth on the grid, and then emerged in third when the stops for slick tyres were complete. He gained a position through Sebastian Vettel's retirement from the lead, and then fended off a string of rivals to hold second to the flag.

"Unfortunately Australia has not always been lucky for me, in the last two years I could have finished on the podium easily," said Kubica, who had a late tangle with Vettel a year ago while fighting for second in Melbourne.

"To be honest we were not expecting to finish on the podium, for Renault and myself it is a special result. We were pushing hard during the winter and this was the best result we could get for the beginning of the season. This is big thanks to all the guys.

"We have to stay realistic, we are not up to pace to finish on the podium normally. We need to keep pushing and I am sure we will manage sooner or later to be on the pace."

Kubica had briefly been ahead of eventual winner Jenson Button during the flurry of tyre changes as the track dried, but could not fend off the McLaren as its slicks were already warmed up.

"It was difficult because we struggled with the warm-up so when we saw Button was quick on slicks we pitted on the same lap as Felipe [Massa]," Kubica explained.

"My guys did a fantastic job, we overtook Felipe in the pitstop but Button was much quicker with one or two laps on his tyres - he built temperature up, and they are very quick on straightline speed. I was not confident with the conditions as it was my first lap on slicks so it was hard to fight with Button."

The subsequent decision not to make a second tyre stop later in the race then proved key to Kubica's result, as the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Mark Webber lost ground when they came in for fresh rubber.

Kubica said he had initially expected to pit until the team realised that nursing the tyres to the finish could pay dividends.

"I thought we would pit again but when we had big degradation I asked if we should pit, they said if we could manage not to do it," Kubica explained.

"I had Lewis attacking me, he came very quickly, then he decided to pit, then Felipe came. I was hoping with good speed to keep second until the end."

shares
comments
Vettel says failure robbed him of win
Previous article

Vettel says failure robbed him of win

Next article

Delighted Button says tyre call was his

Delighted Button says tyre call was his
Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Plus

Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

A testing return to the Singapore Grand Prix in tricky conditions created plenty of hazards and mistakes for the Formula 1 drivers to fall into. That partly explains a number of low scores, including from a handful of high profile runners, allowing others to take a starring role under the floodlights

The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP Plus

The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP

In a marathon Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix, Sergio Perez’s victory was only assured hours after the race due to a stewards investigation. Throughout the contest the Red Bull driver impressively held off Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in changing conditions to see the Mexican pull out enough of an advantage to negate his post-race penalty

The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams Plus

The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams

What happens, asks MATT KEW, if the old adage of win on a Sunday, sell on a Monday is no longer true for F1 manufacturers?

Formula 1
Oct 2, 2022
Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie? Plus

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie?

The Australian rising star is fast, consistent, confident, adaptable and has shown excellent racecraft, but there’s already a taint to his reputation. That hasn’t stopped him becoming the hottest property in this year’s F1 driver market and why McLaren moved fast to snap up the 21-year-old

Formula 1
Sep 30, 2022
The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022
Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Plus

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022