Nico Hulkenberg, Racing Point, Silverstone, 2020

Missing chance to race would be disappointing but not unexpected – Hulkenberg

2020 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

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Nico Hulkenberg says he would be disappointed to miss the chance to race this weekend if Sergio Perez is able to return to Racing Point but not surprised.

Racing Point confirmed today Perez has completed the quarantine period he was required to observe following his positive Covid-19 test last week. If he tests negative for the virus today, he will be able to return in Hulkenberg’s place.

“Obviously that would be somewhat disappointing after having been back in the car and getting a taste of it,” said Hulkenberg

“But obviously it was always clear that I come in as a temporary replacement for Checo, not knowing if it’s one race, two races, or what. Obviously, he’s the main driver and whenever he’s good to race again, he’ll be back.”

Hulkenberg said the most challenging aspect of his comeback was having to adjust to a completely new a car in a short space of time.

“Every car is different. The seating position, the kind of noises, every car has a different feel to it.

“Just coming in without any kind of preparation, really getting getting thrown out there – I ran into the paddock 10 minutes before first practice, got changed, did the jump-out test and then I was straight out there doing a usual Friday programme.

“So this together with just learning about the car and obviously with higher fuel, lower fuel, different engine modes obviously everything I did was for the first time with this car. So just adapting to it and then learning it as fast as possible.”

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His return to the track last weekend as a substitute gave him an opportunity to discuss a possible full-time comeback to F1 next year.

“I’ve been in contact with quite a few people from the Formula 1 industry and team principals, because obviously we all know each other. Some are just casual chats, some is more about the future subject. So definitely in discussion, in talks there, but nothing too, say, concrete there. I guess it’s still a matter of weeks before things get a bit more concrete and firm.”

Hulkenberg said he was pleased to hear the positive feedback to his return, but does not believe it will make a difference to his future in the sport.

“It’s definitely nice to hear that feedback and the opinion of people about it. Definitely well-received and nice to read it and hear that for me, personally.

“I think it doesn’t really play a big role when it comes to future questions because at the end of the day there’s other things that they’re looking at then and if it fits with the team or not.

“Obviously I did what I could in the given circumstances. I think it went okay. Of course it could have gone better here and there which is kind of normal and what you would expect at this notice. But I think it was quite okay.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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10 comments on “Missing chance to race would be disappointing but not unexpected – Hulkenberg”

  1. At least Nico will have a free set of RP clothing and merchandise.

    1. Didn’t he have to borrow Lance’s boots last week?

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        6th August 2020, 17:32

        and race suit! he said it was a good fit actually.

  2. If the talks about the future become realistically concrete, I hope he doesn’t accept a ‘third driver’ role anywhere and gets back into a race seat. Even if currently the only places he can go are Haas or Alfa Sauber, unless there’s a bigger twist in 2020’s driver market yet to come. I would very much like to see him come back full time.

  3. In my opinion, Perez deserves more to drive this weekend because he proved that he is a better driver.

    1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
      6th August 2020, 17:37

      i agree he’s the better driver. But he had to take some responsibility for going out to places that were not really adviseable. He apparently spent some time in italy and met up with friends and family in a restaraunt. Also went to see his mum in hospital. Undersstand why he may want to do these things, but some of them were not a good thing to do. With all that was going on with the virus, I think it was pretty irrisponsible if he wanted to race every weekend that seriously. Very likely that one of these things won’t have helped regarding him testing positive.

  4. In a way this sums up Hulkenberg’s career. Just can’t get the rub of the green. Yes he did bottle it when he had chances too, but that’s beside the point.

    I remember when he was first introduced by BBC where they had a chat during a ‘fun’ clay pigeon shoot, and he got beat by freak good shooting by fellow beginner Lee McKenzie. Got me thinking already then. Somebody just don’t have the luck it seems.

  5. If Perez gets cleared to drive this weekend I rest my case. This is a cruel ending to Hulkenberg’s “curse”. “You will be able to smell it, but you will never have it!”

  6. Jonathan Parkin
    6th August 2020, 17:34

    I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand it would be nice to have Perez back but technically Hulkenberg didn’t get a race meaning his call up was essentially a waste of time

    If it was me I would use Hulkenberg this weekend to give him another opportunity to race

  7. #GiveHulkAChance

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