Nico Hülkenberg says the Renault Sport Formula One Team need to fight back during Sunday’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix from fourteenth on the grid after being forced to take a grid penalty for a gearbox change.
The German had continued his run of qualifying inside the top ten and set the ninth fastest time overall, just ahead of team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr., but will drop down the order due to his penalty, which will mean Renault will need to be clever with their strategy calls on race day.
Hülkenberg feels positive that they can make gains on Sunday, particularly as overtaking is certainly possible around the Baku Street Circuit, with the German aiming to finish inside the points for a fourth consecutive race in 2018.
“We lost some time this morning so we can be pleased to get both cars into Q3,” said Hülkenberg. “The balance in the car doesn’t sit quite where I would like it to, but some race weekends are like that and we can be happy that we gave it everything and tomorrow we will do the same to make up positions.
“The gearbox penalty is pretty bitter in this way, but we need to come back with the best strategy and fight hard. The good news is that you can overtake here and know there will be safety cars, so let’s see what we can do.”