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Kubica content after 'difficult' race return

  • Published on 18 Mar 2019 14:20
  • comments 2
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Robert Kubica is remaining positive despite a difficult first race back as a full-time driver.

The Pole started his first Grand Prix since 2010 on Sunday, but had a difficult start in a Williams that is far away from the rest of the field.

Kubica's race was set to be a challenge from the outset, but his day was made tougher after he made contact with Pierre Gasly at Turn 1, which resulted in a total front wing loss.

“As expected it wasn’t the easiest one,” Kubica said. “I think I was the only one starting on the hard tyres, so it was rather more of a test for us to get more data.

"I did a pretty good start but unfortunately with hard tyres I got a good launch but then I had a lot of wheelspin.

“Running into Turn 1 I took it very safe, I moved a lot to the inside over the kerb, and I once I thought ‘OK, this is over’, I went through the first corner and then from what I saw in car Gasly moved quite a lot to the right.

"I think there was contact with Sainz but I saw it on the video that he moved a lot to the right and he damaged my front wing, but I actually didn’t realize until 100 metres later I lost the whole wing. I thought I lost half of it.

“Then this wing caused other damage to the car so we had to pit. The car was not feeling great, then additionally three laps into the race I lost one of the mirrors, which makes it even more difficult with blue flags.

"So it was quite difficult. Once I was in clear air I was told the pace was not bad, actually it was good for the car with the state it was in, and I nearly started laughing because from the inside it felt very bad.”

However Kubica is focusing on the positives from the weekend, saying that he built up more confidence in the car.

“There are some positives. I think [on Saturday] I couldn’t be happy, but it was a complicated day.

"[The race] was probably even more complicated, but from the things which I could have controlled I think I did a reasonably good job and I was getting quite confident that I can do it."

The 34-year-old mirrored Gasly's comments from Sunday, as he stated that he too couldn't see the start lights on the grid due to the higher rear wings.

"I never did a standing start on the grid since Abu Dhabi 2010, and actually it was quite good. But I had a bit of a panic because when I stopped I couldn’t see the lights!

"The rear wing of the McLaren was hiding it, so I could see the first block but not the rest. Then I had to move to the left and there was an additional light so it was a bit of a panic moment.

“But overall, as I said, I’m leaving Australia with definitely more experience, and reasonably happy. Although I would never think that I would say something like this having this pace and finishing so far behind, but that’s the reality.

"[In qualifying] I was disappointed with a few things, and I probably pretended and focused too much like I would be racing with people, a bit of an old-style approach."

Replies (2)

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  • .llor tsum sdeaH

    • + 0
    • Mar 18 2019 - 19:53
  • Interesting issue with the starting lights.
    Regarding performance it's too early to judge, but so far Robert hasn't looked too good. I'm expecting much more from him. Lets just hope that Williams gets some decent pace and we can actually see them race someone. Who would have thought that in a grid that has Haas, Force India, and Toro Rosso, Williams F1 would be the only backmarker. #ThankYouClaire

    • + 0
    • Mar 20 2019 - 04:24

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  • Team Williams
  • Points 1
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  • Grand Prix 21
  • Country Poland
  • Date of b. Dec 7 1984 (34)
  • Place of b. Krakau, Poland
  • Weight 72 kg
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29 - Mar 31
12 - Apr 14
26 - Apr 28
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