Hülkenberg sure of late-season charge
22 August 2012 – Nico Hülkenberg has experienced a number of ups and downs since returning to a Formula 1 race seat. The German, who last competed with Williams in 2010, is currently 16th for Force India but is sure that the Silverstone-based squad will improve.
Although Force India is statistically having its best ever season, the Vijay Mallya-run operation languishes eighth in the championship after targeting a top five placing at the start of the year. This is chiefly due to the improvements of Sauber and Williams.
“Although we improved our car, we have to be realistic,” Hülkenberg tells the official F1 website. “Pace-wise we are still behind Sauber, Williams and all of the front-runners. This means that we have the chance to beat Williams, Sauber or Mercedes when our weekend goes completely smoothly and they struggle. In qualifying this happens more often, but in the race they have 50, 60 or 70 laps to get their faster cars in front of ours, so our race pace actually shows us where we really are.”
After celebrating his 25th birthday on Sunday, Hülkenberg remains positive about an uplift.
“Of course,” he replies when asked if a recovery is possible over the remaining nine races. “We already showed last year that our development speed is very competitive and I do not see a reason why we shouldn't be able to repeat that again. We're only seven points shy of Williams and I think we can catch them. I don't know whether it’s possible to catch Sauber…it will be difficult, but the whole team will try their very best, that´s for sure.”
Force India Constructors Championship positions, 2008-2012:
2012 8th, 46 points *
2011 6th, 69 points
2010 7th, 68 points
2009 9th, 13 points (previous scoring system)
2008 Not Classified, 0 points
• After 11 of 20 races