Robert Kubica says he’s looking forward to racing on Singapore’s streets this weekend:
There are lots of bumps, kerbs, and bits of track where you have to keep some margin for mistakes because the walls are very close – especially in the last sector. I always enjoy driving there and, although the race is very long and demanding, it’s a good track for racing.
Singapore is one of the hardest races of the entire season. The circuit layout is very bumpy and you’re fighting the car all the time. You’re continually in the corners and the only place where you get a breather for a couple of seconds is on the start-finish straight.
After this, you also have the strange timetable that means we work late, go to bed late and wake up in the afternoon. You don’t feel any difference during the race weekend itself, but each year it has felt a bit strange to come back to a normal schedule afterwards.
However he’s not sure he will be able to repeat the team’s Monaco performance, where he qualified on the front row of the grid and finished third:
I think we must be careful not to take anything for granted. It’s true that Singapore is the closest circuit to Monaco in the calendar, but Monaco was over four months ago.
I’d like the car to be as competitive and easy to drive as it was back then, because it makes it easy for me to push straight away and easier for the engineers to work on extracting the final bit of performance. But things change quickly in Formula 1 and it may not be the case.
My approach will be as usual: I will keep in mind that we are fighting in a very strong pack of cars, and lately teams like Williams have come very strong, so we need to wait and see. But I’m definitely looking forward to a good performance.
Kubica also explained the unusual steps the drivers have to take to cope with the race running at night:
The approach I took last year to the unusual schedule meant that I was going to bed very late – about four in the morning. After I went to sleep, I would wake up about three or four in the afternoon.
But what is strange is that you don’t really feel the effects of this unusual routine – probably because the adrenaline and concentration is so high when you are at the track. It’s only after the weekend you feel a bit strange.
Team mate Vitaly Petrov has raced at night before at Qatar in GP2.
But Singapore is the first of five races at tracks he has no prior experience of. He said:
It will be a new challenge for me. I don’t know these circuits at all so I will do the maximum to prepare for them. I have been watching videos of previous races and reading data.
We also hope that our car will be much more competitive in Singapore and for the last few races. I look forward to racing there and to the challenge that lies ahead. There are a lot of difficult corners in Singapore and, from what I saw in the videos, the track is bumpy, the car is jumping a lot and it looks easy to lock the wheels.
2010 Singapore Grand Prix