Heidfeld Confirmed As Kubica’s Replacement
ENSTONE, England — Nick Heidfeld has been confirmed as injured driver Robert Kubica’s replacement with Lotus Renault during the 2011 Formula One World Championship.
The 33-year-old German has started 172 races over the last 11 seasons. He will race alongside Lotus Renault teammate Vitaly Petrov when the new season begins March 13 at the Bahrain Int’l Circuit in Sakhir, Bahrain.
“I would have liked to come back to Formula One in different circumstances, but I’m proud to have been given this chance,” said Heidfeld, who was evaluated by the team during a test session in Jerez, Spain, last week. “Everything has happened so quickly, but I’ve been very impressed by what I have seen so far in terms of the facilities and the dedication of the people at Enstone.
“I really enjoyed the test last week in Jerez and I’ve already settled in well with the guys at the track. I have a good feeling for the car, which is quite innovative. I’m extremely motivated and can’t wait for the season to begin.”
“The team has been through a very difficult couple of weeks and we had to react quickly. We gave Nick a chance in Jerez last week and he really impressed us,” said Lotus Renault team principal Eric Boullier. “He’s quick, experienced and is very strong technically with his feedback and understanding of the car.
Kubica, who has one Formula One triumph in his career, was injured in a crash during the Ronde di Andora Rally in Italy Feb. 6, suffering multiple fractures to his right arm and right leg.