BMW mistake hampers Kubica
9 May 2009 – Robert Kubica was disappointed that a team slip-up deprived him of the chance to achieve higher than tenth place on the grid for the Spanish Grand Prix. The Pole, who made it to the top ten shootout, starts on row five although an error by the team when fitting tyres to the car resulted in a premature return to the pit lane.
"Qualifying started really well for me," said Kubica, who is yet to score points in 2009 after being a title contender for much of last season. "I did two solid runs in Q1 and then an excellent one in Q2. The time was even good enough to take a little gamble - I only did one outing to save a set of tyres. This worked out and it is a clear indication that we have made progress with the performance of the car."
He then immediately ran into trouble in Q3, however, with chronic understeer on the F1.09 car. "In preparation for the decisive run in Q3, the team made a mistake while fitting the tyres," explained BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen whilst reviewing his team's performance. "Nick (Heidfeld) missed Q3 by just a fraction. Obviously, the fact that he went off in the morning and lost some valuable time to set up the car also played a role."