Robert Kubica will make his return to a Formula 1 race weekend in first practice for the Styrian Grand Prix, Alfa Romeo announced on Tuesday.
A one-time race winner, Kubica made his F1 comeback from a gruesome rally injury last year with Williams, but after being thoroughly outclassed by teammate George Russell, he was let go at the end of the season and signed with Alfa in a test and reserve driver capacity..
Taking over for Antonio Giovinazzi, this will mark not just the Pole’s second outing in the 2020 car after a session in preseason testing, but also his first appearance at a GP since Abu Dhabi last December.
“I am looking forward to returning to action this weekend, especially after the long break the whole world of motorsport had to observe,” Kubica said in a team press release.
“My objective, as always, is to provide as much data as possible for our engineers and to give them my feedback from within the cockpit.
“This weekend will be quite a new experience for everyone, racing in the same venue we were on just a few days ago, so it will be a matter of refining all the data we collected over the course of the Austrian Grand Prix and testing the adjustments we want to make to the cars.”
Since his last outing in the car, Kubica has been completing simulator work for the team, with boss Frederic Vasseur stating he is eager to hear Kubica’s feedback.
“I am looking forward to seeing Robert in the car on Friday. A driver with his experience always comes up with valuable feedback and he’ll be able to help us continue learning about our car.
“Robert was with the team last weekend, of course, and so he is fully aware of everything that was discussed in the engineering meetings and during each session: it’ll be a chance for him to experience the car by himself and, armed with that knowledge, help us progress further.”