Lotus Renault GP has confirmed Nick Heidfeld as replacement driver for the injured Robert Kubica and team-mate to Vitaly Petrov.

“I would have prefered to come back to Formula One in different circumstances, but I’m proud to have been given this chance,” Heidfeld said. “Everything has happened so quickly, but I’ve been very impressed by what I have seen so far in terms of the facilities and the dedication of the people at Enstone. I really enjoyed the test last week in Jerez and I’ve already settled in well with the guys at the track. I’ve a good feeling for the car, which is quite innovative. I’m extremely motivated and can’t wait for the season to begin.”

Renault team principal Eric Boullier claims he had no doubts about the decision. “The team has been through a very difficult couple of weeks and we had to react quickly,” he said. “We gave Nick a chance in Jerez last week and he really impressed us. He’s quick, experienced and is very strong technically with his feedback and understanding of the car. We always said the priority was to have an experienced driver in the car and we feel he is the ideal man for the job. We are pleased to welcome Nick to the team and look forward to a strong start to the season with him and Vitaly [Petrov] in Bahrain [next month].”


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