Rowland 'second favourite' behind Kubica for Renault seat

Oliver Rowland-Renault
© XPB 

Renault development driver Oliver Rowland sees himself as second line for a seat with the French outfit in F1 next year.

The F2 racer will be running demo laps tomorrow in Renault's 2012 E20 car at the Gamma Race Day in Assen, in the Netherlands.

But the 24-year-old was particularly attentive to this week's in-season test at Budapest which saw Renault run Robert Kubica and his DAMS team mate Nicholas Latifi.

"My F2 teammate, Nicholas Latifi, was testing so I got a bit of information back from him," Rowland told Channel 4's Sarah Holt.

"We get on and share a lot of information within F2. I spoke to him last night and he said he had a good day.

"It’s good for me as well as he’s a decent reference for them (Renault) to compare me to him and compare him to Robert.

"But you never really know with these tests, the teams run a lot of fuel and you never really know what setting their on with the engines so from the outside it’s difficult to gauge exactly what’s going on."

Rowland has two wins in F2 so far this season and is doing his best to emerge as a candidate for a race seat at Renault next season alongside Nico Hulkenberg.

But there are a pair of talented young guns to compose with - Latifi and Sergey Sirotkin - and 'Miracle Man' Robert Kubica, with everyone eyeing the same precious seat.

"Robert comes with a lot of support and everybody would like to see him back in Formula One which is why it’s a little bit difficult for me pushing that seat as well when he’s in the frame," continues Rowland.

"As for the other two, Nicholas is my teammate in F2 so there is a direct comparison there. If he was to beat me then he should get a seat in F1 and if it’s the other way round you’d like to think that I would.

"Sirotkin did GP2 last year and finished third but I’d like to think that I’m doing a slightly better job. We were also teammates in 2014 in World Series by Renault and I beat him then.

I see myself as not coming with the most backing in the world but second favourite behind Robert from that side of things.

"I respect him from what he did before and it would be nice to see him there if I wasn’t fighting for the seat!"

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