Autosport is announcing that BMW have taken their option on Robert Kubica but were unable to secure a much preferred three-year deal.Apparently Kubica would like to remain a free agent in 2010. With this news, it is also stated by Autosport that BMW have put pressure on Nick Heidfeld to step up his performance issues of late if he wants to remain at BMW alongside Kubica.
Autosport asked Dr. MArio Theissen about Nick’s situation:
“I am not sure. What we saw in Valencia was mixed again and, in the second run in qualifying two, it was almost a perfect lap. He was struggling before in two specific areas of the track and in that one lap he was able to do that very cleanly.
“I hope it gives him the confidence to be strong again in the races, he has been strong, I think he will be back on track.”
When questioned if qualifying was a factor in retaining Nick, Dr. Mario said:
“It has to, because if you look what you can do from P10, it is limited.”
As a Nick Heidfeld fan, I am not sure what has prompted the unraveling of his career at BMW or specifically this year. He started out good but hit a wall and has been easily handled by his teammate for the majority of the year. This is the first teammate I can recall Nick every being beaten by and that includes Kimi Raikkonen. I fear that Nick’s understated demeanor and current woes with the car may just signal an end to his F1 career. Nick is capable of winning. I think Nick is better than many of the drivers on the grid but unfortunately something has happened that has unsettled him in the 2008 car.
I would hate to see Nick go or never get a real chance in a top car but there is a side of me that is realistic in the sense that BMW is looking to young stars like Vettel, Kubica and if rumors are true, Alonso. There is another side of me that thinks an ALMS Audi with Nick at the wheel would be a lot of fun to watch. Here is hoping Nick can iron out his issues and remain at BMW. He has done a tremendous job for that team and I would hate to see him leave on the cusp of becoming a great team and car.
Grace points out, and I completely agree with her on this:
This of course isnâ€™t the reason why I reported this story. I really reported this so I could a) mock Heidfeldâ€™s facial hair and b) mock autosport for claiming that they had exclusive rights to the prediction that BMW would pick up the option on Kubica for 2009. Ah thatâ€™s pretty much a no brainer, man. What else did you exclusively predict â€œDC will crash into someone before the end of 2008,â€ or â€œMichael Schumacher will receive the Michael Schumacher fashion award?â€ Come on.
I smell Bravado award two weeks in a rowâ€¦