Formula 1-expat Robert Kubica is set to face a steep learning curve when he makes his debut in the DTM later this year, according to two-time champion René Rast.
Following his departure from the Williams F1 team, Kubica will drive for BWM Team ART – the French outfit making their DTM debut as a team.
Kubica partook in the post-season rookie test at Jerez in December last year. His debut has been pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic which has delayed the DTM season until July at the earliest.
Rast believes Kubica will be up for the challenge, although will face a tough task in getting up to speed in race trim.
Speaking with Motorsport.com, Rast said:
“It certainly won’t be easy. The DTM car is very special. Especially to understand the tyre over a race distance is not easy.
“And if we shouldn’t have a test, it will be even more difficult for him. But I think he’s already driven one or two days in winter.
“And in terms of one lap performance he was really strong, he was up there in front. But then it’s a question of what it looks like over a race distance. Can he really understand the tyres quickly? That is another question.
“But I think he is capable of driving in the front. In Formula 1, he didn’t have a good car with Williams, he always drove around the back.
“You never really noticed him. It seemed almost ridiculous, where he was driving around. But I am quite sure that he is still a really good racing driver, because in the past he was a mega talent.
“And without the accident I would have thought he could have won a Formula 1 title. So he has not forgotten how to drive. He’ll have to change, but that certainly won’t take long.”
The DTM season is scheduled to start at the Norisring in July. However, given the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe, it remains unclear as to whether the event will proceed as scheduled.