Nico Hulkenberg: “Learning the track is crucial”

World © Octane Photographic Ltd. Sahara Force India VJM09 - Nico Hulkenberg. Saturday 28th May 2016, F1 Monaco GP Qualifying, Monaco, Monte Carlo.

Nico Hulkenberg had a positive race at the Canadian Grand Prix last weekend, finishing in eighth place, as points scoring results become more of a regular occurrence for the Sahara Force India team.

This weekend sees F1 head to an all new circuit in Azerbaijan for the 2016 European Grand Prix, and the German is looking forward to experiencing the new venue and city.

“I’m massively excited about the race in Baku, actually! New venues are cool; everything is fresh and everyone welcomes you. I have to admit I don’t know a lot about Azerbaijan, so it will be exciting to get to know this new place.

“I haven’t had a chance to try it in the simulator yet but I saw the video on YouTube earlier last week. In any case, it really is all about getting there, getting into the car and finding out about the track in those first few laps.

Like most drivers, Hulkenberg’s only knowledge of the Baku City Circuit is through the recently released YouTube video, where Euroformula Open driver Gulhuseyn Abdullayev completed some test laps of the track. Nevertheless, the German believes this weekend’s race will be an exciting challenge.

“The layout looks fast, especially for a street circuit: there is a massive straight, with just a few flat-out kinks, and some more twisty sections which will require a compromise in terms of set-up.

“I am a big fan of street circuits: they provide you with unique thrills, you drive close to the walls and it’s much more of a challenge to push your car and yourself to the limit.”