Hulkenberg believes Sochi pace can be repeated in Austin

Force India's Nico Hulkenberg thinks he can finish the Formula 1 season on a high, despite the disappointment of the Russian Grand Prix at Sochi when he threw away a top-six start with a first-lap crash.

Hulkenberg believes Sochi pace can be repeated in Austin
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 on the grid
Grid girl for Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W06 leads at the start of the race as Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 spins
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 and Marcus Ericsson, Sauber C34 crash at the start of the race
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 and Marcus Ericsson, Sauber C34 crash at the start of the race
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 on the drivers parade
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM08

The proliferation of long straights in the remaining races should play to the strengths of the Mercedes-powered Force India, as proved by teammate Sergio Perez's impressive podium finish in Russia.

“I think Austin should be positive again,” Hulkenberg told Motorsport.com. “Similar characteristics to this track, very flowing medium/high speed corners dominate, and recently the car has performed quite well there. So should be more points and more positive stuff.

“For me personally I look for four strong races to the end of the season, obviously I want to get this one out of the system, and then finish the season on a high note.”

“A passenger” in first-corner crash 

Hulkenberg says he was “a passenger” when he started to spin in front of the pack at the start of the Russian GP. He lost control of his Force India at Turn 2, was clipped by the Toro Rosso of Max Verstappen and then hit hard by Marcus Ericsson’s Sauber.

“It was more or less the entry where I just lost the back end,” he said. “I had quite a bit or rear locking on the brakes, and that set me off with oversteer straight away and then I lost the back end completely.

“Obviously not a good thing in the first corner with the entire field behind you if you're facing the wrong direction, and unfortunately they couldn't all get around me.

“It was just a combination of a bit of cold tyres, brake balance probably a bit too far rearwards, and maybe a little bit too late on the brakes.

“It was not just a small oversteer, once it went it went completely, and I was sideways in the middle of the corner. At that point I was a passenger, so the damage was done a bit before that.”

Hulkenberg says he was not too worried, despite his exposure to oncoming traffic: “It was not very scary. It's a shitty situation, uncomfortable, but it's low speed in that corner, so not too worrying.

"If that was high speed, then different story.”

shares
comments
Exclusive: Panis says ART’s Vasseur would “do the job” for Renault F1

Previous article

Exclusive: Panis says ART’s Vasseur would “do the job” for Renault F1

Next article

David Hunt, brother of James, dies at 55

David Hunt, brother of James, dies at 55
Load comments
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Prime

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences.

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Prime

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Prime

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Prime

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1's elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he's recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Italian Grand Prix driver ratings

Two drivers produced faultless performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left many to rue what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Prime

Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates Prime

Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates

For the second time in 2021, McLaren will line up for the start of a grand prix from the first row. It knows it has the chance of "glory" if things go well for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at the start of the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but even if they just maintain their grid positions, signs from the rest of the Monza weekend suggest success is very possible for Formula 1's other orange army

Formula 1
Sep 12, 2021