Hülkenberg feels DRS issue cost him points
9 October 2017 – Renault's Nico Hülkenberg reckons the issue with his Drag Reduction System (DRS) shortly after his pit-stop cost him a points finish at the Japanese Grand Prix.
Hülkenberg started from 11th position on Soft tyres and ran deep into the race, surviving a wayward moment when he went wide through the gravel at Degner 2.
He pitted on lap 38 for Super Softs and emerged in 13th spot, at the tail end of the closely-contested scrap for eighth position.
Hülkenberg immediately overhauled Toro Rosso's Pierre Gasly but the DRS on his R.S.17 jammed open and he was left with no choice but to pit.
Renault mechanics attempted to rectify the issue – forcefully thumping the rear wing – but it could not be fixed, and Hülkenberg retired.
"That was frustrating as a good points haul was possible," said Hülkenberg.
"I had fresh Super Soft tyres for a short final stint. I was able to overtake a Toro Rosso straight after my pit-stop to then set about attacking the Haas.
"It's a shame, but a small metal component broke on the DRS mechanism which left it stuck open.
"We'll look at why it broke as we missed a good opportunity.
"I'm sure we can fight back, the car was pretty decent in the race and there's plenty more to come from us in the final four Grands Prix."
Outgoing team-mate Jolyon Palmer finished in 12th position.
Palmer will be replaced for the remainder of the season by Carlos Sainz Jr., ahead of the Spaniard's full-time drive with the manufacturer next year.