Hülkenberg still struggling with VJM09 balance despite P9 qualifying effort

Nico Hulkenberg - Credit: Sahara Force India

Nico Hülkenberg admitted that he and his Sahara Force India team have been struggling with their set-up throughout the Italian Grand Prix weekend at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, so he was relatively happy to make it through to Q3 and qualify ninth on Saturday.

The German felt the team had improved the performance of his VJM09 overnight following some changes made to the car, but was still unhappy that they had still not found a good balance ahead of qualifying.

“I’m as happy as I can be with ninth on the grid,” said Hülkenberg. “For some reason we’ve struggled to find the harmony and balance with the car this weekend, so it’s a good result to see both cars through to Q3.

“We’ve tried a lot of things with the set-up and made some small improvements, but I’m still not entirely happy with the balance.”

Hülkenberg knows it will be important to get the strategy calls right on Sunday due to the close nature of the field at Monza, and knows the damage will be done if they make the wrong call.

“Tomorrow is another day – tyres will play a big role and it’s going to be interesting to see how things play out,” insisted Hülkenberg.

“When the middle of the grid is so close we need to make sure we make the correct strategy calls because the final results will be decided by some very small gaps.”