Nico Hülkenberg frustrated with unproductive Thursday for Renault

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

Nico Hülkenberg has expressed his frustration with a lack of meaningful dry running on the final day of Formula 1′s first winter test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Hülkenberg finished the day in eleventh, despite topping the morning timing screens, for the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team – completing 49 laps. His team-mate, Carlos Sainz Jr., assumed testing duties in afternoon and managed 60 laps in the R.S.18 – enough for sixth place, 1.6 seconds adrift of pacesetter Lewis Hamilton.

The German said that he was affected by cool temperatures in Barcelona – after snow all but ceased Wednesday’s running – even on the extreme wet and intermediate tyres.

“We struggled to get some clean running and temperature into the wet and intermediate tyres this morning,” said Hülkenberg. “So it wasn’t as productive as we’d like.”

Despite the disappointment, Hülkenberg is hopeful that next week’s second and final winter test can bring better weather and consequently more meaningful running. The current forecast looks promising, with temperatures set to be in the 15-17° range throughout the week with little chance of rain and no known threat of snow.

“The track did take a long time to dry out, with the new surface and still pretty cool conditions, so I only managed one dry, but still damp, run at the end of my time in the car today,” the 30-year-old added.

“Next week we’re hoping for much better from the Spanish skies.”