<
>

Williams says there are 'no issues' with Robert Kubica limitations

play
Is Kubica the right man for Williams? (2:42)

Jennie Gow and Mark Gallagher share their thoughts on whether Robert Kubica is the right driver to take the vacant seat at Williams in 2018. (2:42)

ABU DHABI -- Williams technical chief Paddy Lowe has refused to give any indication of the team's plans for Robert Kubica beyond this week's tyre tests.

Kubica completed 100 laps of Yas Marina on Tuesday before handing the car over to Lance Stroll, the man he hopes to partner in 2018, for the final couple of hours. He returns to the car for a more condensed schedule on Wednesday, where he is expected to complete some runs on Pirelli's softest compounds.

Though the purpose of the two days at Abu Dhabi is a tyre test for the teams to collect data and build understanding about Pirelli's 2018 compounds, which include the new hyper-soft tyre, it is also believed to be a crucial part of the team's evaluation of the Polish driver. Kubica, who nearly lost his right arm in a 2011 rallying crash, is hoping to complete on of the most remarkable returns in F1 history.

Lowe said the entire team was impressed by the way he approached the test.

"Robert did a great job," he said. "We were very happy with that absolutely with the number of laps and with the running altogether.

"He is a driver of tremendous experience and very knowledgable around his work. His job is a professional racing driver so he has that confident and you can feel it in the garage so everybody's happy with Robert ... Robert is a driver that we've all admired when he drove in Formula One and even since then. It's a great example of his character and that he considered coming back from this accident that he had and fighting away just seeking if he could come back into Formula One."

However, he was also keen to stress that the test is more than just about evaluating Kubica's performance.

"This is a tyre test and it's been really great to work with Robert and Lance as well -- the combination of the two -- to look at the new tyres for next year. We covered all the compounds except the super-hard and the hard, but the other five compounds we have gone through -- also referencing to the 2017 soft and ultra-soft. It was fascinating to be able to get the feedback on the tyres and in Robert's case we also had the comparison to the 2014 car, which is also very interesting."

In his own media session, Kubica had admitted that some limitations from his Ronde di Andora crash still linger but that he is finding "compensations" in order to drive around them. The main question-mark over Kubica's return is whether his right arm -- which still carries extensive scars from the crash -- would allow him to complete a full season of racing.

When asked if he was 100 percent satisfied Kubica would be able to complete long stints in the car and race simulations, Lowe replied simply: "Yeah, there are no issues around that subject."

Pressed on what the next step would be in terms of deciding 2018's line-up, he said: "I'm not talking about steps. We were testing and understanding tyres on the car and Robert is a fantastic driver to contribute to that process."