Robert Kubica thoroughly enjoyed his drive to seventh, as both Renault drivers scored points in the German Grand Prix.
The Polish driver was involved in scraps with Lewis Hamilton, Michael Schumacher and then Nico Rosberg, but held on to convert his starting position into a credible seventh position.
Meanwhile, team-mate Vitaly Petrov rounded off the top ten, despite not realising that he had finished in the points.
Robert Kubica – 7th: I think we had a good weekend considering the car’s potential at this circuit. There were some exciting moments during the race: I made a good start and was fighting to pass Hamilton into turn two when he braked early, and I ended up losing positions to Button and Webber. Then, after my stop, I had a good battle with Michael to keep my position – but I also had to make sure I didn’t lose too much time fighting with him, because I had to maintain a good pace to stay in front of Rosberg who hadn’t yet stopped. Overall, though, the gap to the front-runners was too big for us to fight for more than seventh place, so I think we must be pleased that we achieved our maximum.
Vitaly Petrov – 10th: This was an interesting race for me and I am very happy to have scored my first point in dry conditions – especially because I thought that I had finished 11th, so it was an even better surprise when I found out I was tenth! I managed to gain a position at the start, the pace was good today and I made a big effort to push at the right time before the pit stop, which helped me climb two more places. I am pleased with my race but I know that I could have done better in qualifying, so I still need to work hard and put all of the pieces together across the weekend.
Eric Boullier, Team Principal: There were some very positive points from today’s race. The team did a strong job on the strategy and with the pit stops; Robert achieved the full potential of the car and showed we were the fourth quickest team this weekend; and Vitaly produced an excellent drive. He showed good pace, pushed when he needed to in order to gain positions and scored the final point. On the other hand, in terms of pure performance, we cannot be satisfied to be lapped by Ferrari. It shows that we still have a lot of work to do, but we know that we have some good upgrades on the way.
Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer: We knew that our pace today wasn’t good enough to match the top three teams. Robert did a great job to retain his position: he managed to stay ahead of both Mercedes around the pit stops, and that is not easy to do when you are trying to defend against two cars stopping at different times. He got the best result we could have hoped for today. As for Vitaly, he put in an excellent drive: he made a good start, and then managed to overtake two cars at the stops. This meant we finished with both cars in the points for the second time this year, and we can be happy with that.
Remi Taffin, Head of Engine Operations: This was a good result when compared with Mercedes, the team we are fighting in the championship, with one car finishing ahead of them and one right behind. Robert did a strong job to finish where he started, which was the most we could hope for without any problems for the quicker cars in front. Vitaly did a super job, and showed that his pace could match Robert’s here at Hockenheim. Unfortunately, he didn’t manage to qualify as high up the grid as he could have done, but his drive today showed that we can count on him. Our engines were on their third race but we were able to push them to the limit all race without any problems. That means we will have fresh units next weekend, in addition to more progress with our development programme.