Nico Hülkenberg finished the Italian Grand Prix down in thirteenth position and admitted that the whole race was a struggle, and that the deficit in top speed compared to the top five teams meant it was always going to be a challenge to break into the top ten.
Coupled with the lack of pace on his RS17, the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team driver also struggled with the balance, meaning he also found himself behind Kevin Magnussen and Daniil Kvyat in the final classified result.
“Unfortunately we weren’t able to make into the points here today as the race was a bit of a struggle,” said Hülkenberg. “As we had anticipated, we lost out on top speed, meaning we couldn’t fight with the cars ahead.
“I was also struggling with the balance, so overall it was a tough race. That said, I don’t think we need to go crazy over today’s performance. We need to look ahead to Singapore and focus on the next Grand Prix.”
Team-mate Jolyon Palmer was the race’s first retirement but not before he had made a few advances on his grid spot, only for a transmission issue curtailing his day before he could take advantage of his Supersoft Pirelli tyres.
“Our strategy was promising and I was quite enjoying working up the order today,” said Palmer. “It wasn’t going to be our strongest race, but there was potential for a decent finish.
“Sadly, we had a transmission component failure which led to a precautionary stop. It’s a shame because I think the pace was looking quite strong with the Supersofts in the end.”