Q & A with Robert Kubica

Renault has not yet appeared at the absolute head of the pack during winter testing, but the team has been quietly confident about its achievements so far

Q & A with Robert Kubica

New driver Robert Kubica is certainly satisfied, as he told the media - including AUTOSPORT - following today's Jerez session.

Q. How do you sum up the day's testing?

Robert Kubica: It was quite a productive day. We went deeper into set-up work and understanding the car after what we did in Valencia. We were lucky with the weather because yesterday it was quite bad and the next two days don't look very good. It was important to get a lot of things done.

We started a bit later because of the damp conditions in the morning, but as soon as the track got dry we had a smooth day with a lot of runs. Maybe not a lot of laps, but just enough laps to understand what we were testing.

Q. Did you try many parts and fuel levels?

RK: No, we were more based on understanding of the single components on the car and set-up work, just to give me a feeling how big a factor single changes on the set-up are and to know how big a step we have to do to fix the problems. So we kept a constant fuel level.

Q. How difficult is it to judge where the problems are when it is so hard to know where you stand?

RK: We know more or less where we have to improve. I have never looked too much at competitors. You always try to do your best because in the end even if something is good it doesn't mean that it cannot be better. Firstly when you have a new car and a new team you try to concentrate on the biggest problems because they are costing performance. The priority is to solve he biggest issues and then go deeper into the fine tuning.

Q. After such a long time in one team, how long does it take to feel at home here and understand how the engineers think and the design philosophy of the car?

RK: To get to know the characteristics of the car and the technical side, it of course requires laps. After these days of testing I have much more knowledge about the car, what it likes and what it doesn't like. Also, the same changes on the set-up don't necessarily have exactly the same effect on all cars. I found some difference between what I was used to and what I am having now.

From the team side, we spent quite a long time talking and discussing and trying to get to know each other as best as we can. By talking you can gain a lot of time which then you can use to concentrate on work at the track. Overall, I feel at home already now.

Q. Is the car reacting well to set-up changes?

RK: Yes. Some changes are less sensitive then I was used to, which is better because it gives you a wider window of car balance. It's not so sensitive, which is very positive. Last year it was no secret that we had a very sensitive car and it was very difficult to set up. The Renault is a lot easier on this side.

Q. So it's too early to judge the performance of the car?

RK: It's very difficult to judge performance. We have to look for ourselves to make everything work as best we can. Then once we get to Bahrain we will see.

Also we saw with the team I was racing with in the past that February doesn't mean anything. You can be king in February and slow in the second race. And it can be the opposite like it happened in 2008 where we [BMW] were very slow at the beginning of testing and then started on the first row in the first two races.

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Kubica already 'at home' with Renault

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