Date: 28th February 2011 at 11:23am
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When Renault started to draw up a shortlist to replace Robert Kubica for the 2011 season, only one man ticked all the boxes according to their team boss.

Reserve team drivers Bruno Senna and Romain Grosjean and Fairuz Fauzy, Jan Charouz and Ho-Pin Tung from the teams development programme were all over looked due to the teams need to bring in an experienced driver to help them complete the testing of the new car.

German driver Nick Heidfeld was without a drive for 2011 following his departure from Sauber and the 33-year-old stepped into the Renault team for the test at Jerez before it was announced that he would replace Kubica while he recovered from his rally crash.

‘Because the accident happened at such an early stage of the season, we concluded very rapidly that we needed a very experienced driver – and fast, obviously – and having enough character to lead some technical decisions or to take some decisions in a firm manner with the team,’

‘When you draw up this profile, and I added if possible [that we wanted] experience with Pirelli tyres and knowledge of having raced with KERS in 2009, it was obvious that was only one ticking all the boxes, which was Nick.’
said Renault team boss Eric Boullier to Autosport Magazine.

Even Robert Kubica recommended him shortly after coming out of a coma, following the Pole’s first operation: ‘We even discussed this with Robert actually. I was too early, he was just waking up from the coma, but Gerard [Lopez] talked with him and Robert raised two names: Nick and [Tonio] Liuzzi.’ Boullier added.

Heidfeld has gone on to impress during the teams Barcelona winter test session and the teams development looks set improve ahead of the start of the 2011 season.



 

One Reply to “Heidfeld ticked all the boxes for Renault”

  • Having read his comments about thinking through his decision it must have helped to know that he had Kubica’s backing.

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