Is Hulkenberg a "bottler"?

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • Author
  • #345026
    Ben Needham

    The title sounds a little more harsh than I was hoping for, but last weekend’s GP illustrates to me one of the reasons that Hulkenberg has never stood on a podium.

    In and around his level on the grid there are numerous drivers who have sprayed the champagne: Magnussen, Grosjean, Bottas, Stroll and Perez, the latter even doing so several times whilst they were team-mates.

    If you asked me to list the most reliable drivers on the grid in terms of getting the car home, I’d put Hulkenberg ahead of all of the above. However, when it comes to two opportunities where an opportunity for a podium (or even a win) were staring him in the face, he’s crashed or been below par… think Brazil 2012, Bahrain 2014, Azerbaijan 2017.

    I know he’s won Le Mans and is an outstanding driver who I personally rate very highly… but I wonder if nerves are getting the better of him.

    123 starts with no podium to show for it… I appreciate that he’s never had a truly top car, but neither have several of the drivers I listed above. Is this a poor return or has he really just been unlucky?


    In fairness there have been times when his strategy has compromised his chances. I can’t remember which one, but there was a race last year when Perez got a podium that could have easily been Hulkenberg had the team opted to switch the strategies. And I recall another time his car gave up on him (again, I can’t remember which race and I’m wondering if I’ve got myself mixed up with somebody else).

    It’s true that he has blown some chances, like even a possible win in Brazil 2012, but even then he only crashed into Hamilton because he was caught out lapping the Caterham, and he was only in his second season so there’s inexperience there. And what happened in Baku is not really much different from Hamilton’s qualifying accident last year. I don’t think he had a chance of a podium anyway to be honest. Look at how Magnussen amongst other started falling back again once Hamilton and Vettel were charging back through the pack.

    And don’t forget, had Renault released him from his contract he would possibly be in the Mercedes this year. I would put it down to bad luck more. That being said, I’m a big fan of his so maybe I am biased.

    Adam Blocker

    If you look at each incident individually, you could say that Hulkenberg didn’t bottle it in basically every case. But when you look at everything collectively it’s hard to say that he isn’t a bottler, at least to a certain extent.



    You are correct his time is fast moving from “when is this young fella going to get a top drive?” to “well The Hulk was a great 2nd tier F1 Driver” I am a big fan of Nico but he doesn’t seem to seize the day like, say, Ricciardo does.

    He did sign a Ferrari contract by all accounts but unfortunately for him they didn’t sign as well (Side note- how many times has Kimi had another driver about to take his seat yet he still gets a drive?

    I hope he can grab a podium (or win) soon but it will depend on how Renault progresses next year but with young fella’s like Ocon coming through and Checo being linked to a top 3 drive he needs to grab the chance when it comes, he is far too good a driver to retire without a podium, that’s for sure.

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.