Robert Kubica is ready to commit his long term future to Renault, as long as the team can prove it has the finances and technical capability to fight for the World Championship.
With the Pole having opened talks with the team about extending his contract with it, sources have revealed that Kubica is seeking guarantees that the outfit will have the money in place that it will need to take on rivals for title glory over the next few years.
Kubica is well aware that Renault had to consider sponsorship issues in its choice of a second driver for this season, opting for Vitaly Petrov because of the commercial benefit of the Russian's involvement. However, with sources suggesting a major title sponsorship deal is on the verge of being signed – team insiders confirm talks with credit card company MasterCard – the team's financial situation could be much improved. The team is so bullish about its financial prospects that team owner Gerard Lopez evidently has informed senior figures inside the team that he may sound out Kimi Raikkonen in the next few months about whether the Finn is interested in a return to F1 with Renault.
Kubica has insisted that he is not spending too much time worrying about his future at the moment, with it certain he will remain next season, but the financial platform going forward will be key to him opting for a single-year deal or committing himself beyond that. Renault team principal Eric Boullier has confirmed that the outfit's main task is to convince the Polish driver that it has the money to achieve its title targets.
"We definitely want him and we have spoken – and it is up to us to show that we have the ambition and the means to be ambitious," he said. "If we do that, then I am sure he will stay. If he doesn't want to stay then he will leave, it is as simple as that."
Boullier said he was not unduly concerned about rival teams chasing Kubica – after a weekend when speculation linking him with Mercedes GP was dismissed.
"Robert is one of the very highly ranked drivers but, because his contract is supposed to end this year, he has become attractive," said Boullier. "It's normal."