Robert Kubica has put his Formula 1 test return down to his preparation programme as opposed to a change in his condition, explaining that his limitations and condition remain unchanged.

Kubica turned in a star display at the Hungaroring to finish the day fourth-fastest as momentum builds towards a full-time return to F1 more than six years after a rally accident appeared to end his career.

The Pole explained how the escalation of his comeback bid in recent months was not down to a change in his physical condition, instead thanks to increased preparations.

“Nothing has changed. I am the same guy I was 10 months ago, four months ago, one week ago - my limitations are the same,” Kubica said.

“From that point of view nothing has changed. From a physical point of view and preparation let’s say a lot has changed, because I’ve started preparing. I was not targeting to come back but I knew that if I would get the chance I have to be ready, and F1 is a very demanding sport.

“Current cars are even more demanding than previous cars. Those cars are the fastest cars of the last 20 years. In the end the cars are even heavier, and this is the biggest difference.

“Probably no-one is talking about it because they got used to it because every year or every two years there was minimum weight increments. For my side, when I last time drove the car the minimum weight was 620 kg, to have 100 kg [extra] bringing around the track, it makes a big difference.

“In a rally car when you put a 20 kg spare wheel in a car which is weighing 1,300 kg, you feel it. Imagine in a 600 kg car adding 100 kg!

“So there were quite big changes for me from what I knew and what I learned in the past so there was a lot of things to learn.

“But from a physical point of view, inside the car it is much better than it looks outside the car. That’s what’s most important.”

Kubica explained that his steering wheel layout had been slightly modified in order to account for the limitations in his right arm and hand, and make activating certain settings easier.

"For the adaptation of the steering wheel there is one part that was done especially for me. There are some adaptations on the gear shift lever, but it’s something that’s been used in the past, it’s still been used lately with some other teams which I know, which I used in the simulators," Kubica said.

"This steering wheel was adapted the past two days. It’s just to reshuffle the button positions to give the highest priorities which I can operate easier, and the lower priority buttons which you never use, or when you use them it’s once in a while in the positions that are more difficult to reach, but apart from this everything is standard."


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