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Nov 17

Lowe hints at Kubica Williams test in Abu Dhabi

The Polish driver saw his F1 career halted after suffering life-threatening injuries in a rallying crash in 2011

2017-04-01-0184Williams technical chief Paddy Lowe says the British team is yet to settle on its post-season Abu Dhabi test driver line-up but strongly tipped Robert Kubica getting another shot to prove he’s ready for a Formula 1 comeback.

With Felipe Massa’s F1 retirement confirmed during the build-up to last week’s Brazilian Grand Prix Kubica has become a front-runner to join Lance Stroll at Williams for 2018. The Polish driver saw his F1 career halted after suffering life-threatening injuries in a rallying crash in 2011.

After running a number of tests with Renault, who ultimately turned down Kubica in favour of taking Carlos Sainz Jr on loan for 2018, the former F1 Grand Prix winner has enjoyed two one-day tests for Williams in a 2014-specficiation car at Silverstone and Hungaroring.

The Polish driver is understood to be a strong contender for another one-day run in this year’s post-season test in Abu Dhabi in the Williams FW40, with the team expected to confirm its plans in the coming days.

With Kubica a favourite for a third Williams test Stroll is likely to be on driver duty for the other test day at the Yas Marina Circuit which concludes F1 track action in 2017.

“I’m not being cagey, we just haven’t decided what we are going to do yet,” Lowe said about the Williams test line-up. “I would love to have five days because then you could do a lot more stuff.

“It is down to what we can do and what is the best thing all around for all the different things we want to evaluate, including doing a good job for Pirelli in their tyre test as they want to understand their tyres.”

Kubica is on the shortlist of drivers aiming to for a 2018 Williams race seat which also includes Daniil KvyatPascal Wehrlein and the team’s current reserve driver Paul di Resta while Jolyon Palmer is seen as an outside bet.

Stroll is expected to have all-but secured his future at Williams for 2018 after his rookie campaign which has been highlighted by his rostrum in Azerbaijan.

source: crash.net

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