Hulkenberg admits to balance struggles after Monza practice

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

Nico Hulkenberg feels he is still struggling with the balance of the VJM09 after Free Practice 2 for the Italian Grand Prix.

The Sahara Force India driver completed only in the afternoon session after he allowed reserve driver Alfonso Celis Jr the chance to run in Free Practice 1. When Hulkenberg returned behind the wheel, he finished in twelfth for the Silverstone-based outfit.

This was the same position Celis achieved in the morning, although Hulkenberg was able to improve from Celis’ time by 0.78 seconds. Hulkenberg was able to finish the opening day of practice ahead of team-mate Sergio Perez by nearly a tenth of a second.

After only one session, the German is unhappy with the car and hopes he can find an improved set-up to be in a better position for Saturday.

“It’s been a relatively short Friday for me,” said Hulkenberg. “Being in the car for FP2 only; but the afternoon went to plan and it was interesting to see our pace during the long runs.

“We managed some good runs and the team should have plenty of data to work with tonight. At this stage, I am not as happy as I would like to be with the car.

“I am still struggling a bit with the balance, so we need to improve things. We need to find some more harmony in the car to get us in better shape for tomorrow.”