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WRC drive for Kubica?

NEWS STORY
12/08/2013

Currently impressing in WRC2, former F1 star Robert Kubica is being considered for a WRC drive with Citroen in 2014.

With wins in the Acropolis Rally and the Rally d'Italia Sardegna, Kubica, whose F1 career was cut horribly short in a pre-season rallying crash in 2011, has been impressing in WRC2 in his maiden season.

Earlier this month the Pole finished runner-up in the WRC2 category in Finland, producing a flawless performance on what is without doubt one of the most difficult courses to get to grips with. The result takes Kubica, and co-driver Maciek Baran ever closer to the top of championship standings.

Speaking in the wake of the event, Citroen Racing team boss Yves Matton admitted that the Polish star is under consideration for a possible move up to WRC in 2014.

"He's doing a very good job but I will say I am more impressed on gravel than on asphalt," he told <i>Maxrally.com</i>. "On asphalt everybody expected him to be fast but he's also very fast on gravel even though he's a rookie on gravel compared to asphalt.

"For me he learns since the beginning of the season and he understood in rallying it's not a succession of qualifying laps and that there are a lot of things he don't know.

"He's only done ten rallies in his life at the moment and each rally is a lot of experience for him," he continued. "I hope we can do something together next year but for the moment it's a little too early. If he continues like he has been doing then it's normal to put him in a World Rally Car for two or three rallies but I don't say the whole championship."

Asked whether the injuries sustained in the 2011 crash are impacting his performance, Matton said: "I'm not in a position to say. I think everybody can see the effect on him and the restriction maybe in his arm. But never once has he complained.

"Before each test he is interrogating himself so much in his head how to drive in the rally or on certain kind of road. Since Sardinia several things are more clear in his head. He knows not always to try for the first place but to think about the championship."

Looking ahead to 2014, he admitted: "For the moment it's completely open. I didn't choose my driver philosophy for next year and I don't decide on the results of one rally. I will start this after Germany. The deadline will be when the championship entry closes (in December) but I hope to be faster than that."

"I didn't really expect to finish second up against so many experienced drivers," said Kubica following the Finland Rally, "but we found the right level of aggression straight away.

"Considering that I only had my first outing on gravel in April, we are clearly moving forward in the right direction," he added. "It's not possible to always take a step forward at every rally. There is still a lot of work to do, because every WRC rally is different and will give me some new experience."

Kubica now holds third place with 76 points scored from four rallies. His average of 19 points scored per race is better than that of the top two, who have already taken part in more events.

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