Robert Kubica's appearance in the Renault Sport Trophy was kick-started by an appearance in the F1 team's simulator at Enstone.
The Pole has not raced in F1 since being severely injured in a rally crash in Italy ahead of the 2011 season, which have limited his range of movement. While he has gone on to compete in rallying, Kubica made a return to Spa-Francorchamps this weekend to race in the Renault Sport Trophy, impressing with third place in qualifying before finishing third in the Endurance race and fourth in the Pro Sprint.
Renault team principal Frederic Vasseur says the drive in the Renault Sport Trophy was a result of talks started when Kubica was used in the F1 team's simulator.
“Yeah it’s true, he did spend some time in the simulator at Enstone," Vasseur told reporters at Spa-Francorchamps during the latest round of the Renault Sport Series. "It’s not a secret.
“I have a good relationship with Robert. It was interesting for me to put him in the sim just to have his feedback. And it was also the beginning of the story with the R.S.01.
“He has a big experience with the simulator because he drove a lot in it with our competitors.”
Kubica used to race for Renault in 2010, and was part of the team when it was sold and rebranded Lotus Renault for the 2011 season before his accident. The Pole scored one win and 11 further podiums in his F1 career, finishing fourth in the drivers' championship for Sauber in 2008.