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Heidfeld: Hopefully 'my usual job' will be enough

Nick Heidfeld admits he hopes that by doing his 'usual job' during his audition for the injured Robert Kubica's Lotus Renault GP seat in testing at Jerez today, he will do enough to seal the deal
Nick Heidfeld has admitted that he hopes his 'usual job' will be enough to convince Lotus Renault GP to employ him as a stand-in for his injured former BMW-Sauber team-mate Robert Kubica in the F1 2011 World Championship – as he stakes his claim during testing at Jerez today.

Heidfeld has emerged as the overwhelming favourite to secure the vacant Lotus Renault GP berth until Kubica is able to return from the hand, arm and leg injuries he sustained in a high-speed crash on the Ronde di Andora Rally in Italy last weekend, from which he was lucky to escape with his life.

As he undergoes surgery to multiple fractures, the Pole is likely to be out for the entire campaign – although he insists he is determined to rejoin the fray as quickly as possible [see separate story – click here] – meaning Heidfeld is staring a golden opportunity to revive his stalled F1 career right in the face.

After just two hours in the R31, the 33-year-old had already bettered the time set by his would-be team-mate Vitaly Petrov the previous day by some six tenths of a second, and there have thus far been none of the spins that blighted the latter's running, with the young Russian blaming his unfamiliarity with KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems), of which Heidfeld, of course, has plenty of experience from 2009.

Lotus Renault GP reserve driver Bruno Senna is due to be similarly evaluated on Sunday, and both Force India F1 refugee Vitantonio Liuzzi and Sauber exile Pedro de la Rosa are reportedly waiting in the wings for the German to slip up – but the common paddock consensus is that barring a disaster for 'Quick Nick', the deal is all-but sealed.

“It's not necessarily having to push myself [to impress the team],” he told BBC Sport, although pointedly, he has just gone quickest of anyone on day three in Spain. “I will just do my usual job. I've been speaking to Renault anyway for the last two years about being involved with the team in some way.

“Robert has been doing a great job. If I can step in until he's better, that would be great. I haven't spoken to him directly, but I have sent him a text and I'm very happy that he's on the mend.”

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jose - Unregistered

February 12, 2011 3:23 PM

Renault Lotus was lucky that Nick was still around When it comes to experience he stands very close to Rubins..Many teams passed on Nick, most likely for not having a truck full of F1 gold chips.. Do it Nick... Jose


February 12, 2011 5:46 PM

Its quite sad really that I came in to read about Nick and someone has to start another debate by dragging MSC in the mix, is quite tiring to be honest. The fact is you cannot compare 2 different drivers when they are in 2 different cars which in turn makes the argument a non starter, except only to stir up sh1t as usual... I expect some more intelligence from some of the more established contributors (ahem) on this site... sadly it didnt happen...

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