• Renault

Renault sign Kubica for 2010

ESPNF1 Staff
October 7, 2009 « Nico Rosberg to drive for Mercedes GP in 2010 | »

The second major domino in the driver market has fallen with confirmation that Robert Kubica will drive for Renault next season. He replaces the Ferrari-bound Fernando Alonso.

"I am very happy I will be joining Renault in the 2010 season," said Kubica. "I feel I have a special connection with this team because in 2005 I won the World Series by Renault. This gave me the chance to test with the team in Barcelona, which led to my debut in Formula One.

"I share with Renault a strong winning mentality and feel comfortable with their friendly and open attitude. I'm highly motivated and optimistic that together we can be at the front of the grid next year and hopefully fighting for the world title."

Kubica had been linked to the team for some time as well as a possible move to the Toyota team. The latter admitted at Suzuka on Sunday that they had lost the race to sign the current BMW Sauber driver.

"We are very excited to have signed Robert with the Renault F1 Team starting next season," said interim Renault team principal Bob Bell. "Ever since Robert made his grand prix debut in 2006, he has been on our radar as one of the most naturally talented drivers of his generation and he has delivered on that promise so it's great to have secured him in one of our cars next season.

"Renault has high ambitions and hopes for the future of the team and we feel that Robert can play a big role in fulfilling them."

Kubica joined the Swiss-based team in 2006 as test driver and graduated to the race seat following the dismissal of former champion Jacques Villeneuve at the Hungarian Grand Prix the same year.

He went on to finish fourth in the championship last year and also recorded the team's sole grand prix victory in Montreal. With BMW deciding to leave the sport at the end of the 2009 season, Kubica made clear he too would be moving on.

The announcement leaves Toyota still looking for its star driver, while Renault has yet to confirm the identity of Kubica's team-mate for next season.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.