Formula 1

Nico Hulkenberg reflects on ‘a tricky race’ as he makes comeback

2 Mins read
Credit: LAT Photo

Nico Hulkenberg made his return to Formula 1 after a three-year break at the first round of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship in Bahrain, but was left disappointed after “a tricky race” under the lights.

The German driver made a rather unlikely return with the Moneygram Haas F1 Team, and despite a surprise Qualifying Three appearance in qualifying, he was unable to make his return to the sport a dream one with a points finish.

Contact on the first lap caused Hulkenberg to lose a big part of his front wing, costing him a lot of time in the first stint before he lost even more time when he had to have it changed during his first pit-stop of the race. The thirty-five year-old reflected on the race as a race of two halves, with the first one being “very tough” due to the damage he was carrying.

“It was a tricky race – especially the first half. I had contact with someone on lap one which I didn’t really notice so that was a bit frustrating. I had quite a lot missing from the front wing and lost a lot of load and grip with that, and that made the first half of the race very tough.

We tried to hang in there, but I was going through my tires like a hot knife through butter, so we decided there was no point in continuing like that and we pitted for a new front wing. We did a race distance though and got lots of good information, so we’ll definitely take that.”

Kevin Magnussen: “I was pleasantly surprised with our race pace”

Kevin Magnussen feels he left the Bahrain International Circuit with positives to take, despite not scoring points.

The Danish driver was an unlikely victim in Qualifying One on the first Saturday qualifying session of the season, and gave himself a difficult job in the race. Despite his best efforts, he only managed to climb to thirteenth after starting seventeenth.

However, whilst he didn’t score points, Magnussen said he was “pleasantly surprised” with the race pace in the car, and other aspects that they struggled with during testing and over the weekend.

“I was pleasantly surprised with our race pace. We started P17 but still made up a few positions and it felt like the pace was alright in terms of where we came from.

“I think we were struggling a lot in testing and on Friday with tire wear and in the race, it seemed like we made a step, which is positive. It wasn’t the weekend we dreamed of, but we learned a lot.”

Credit: LAT Photo
Related posts
Formula 1

Ricciardo Fumes After Strategy Call Costs Him Points in Hungary

1 Mins read
Ricciardo called out his team after his Hungarian GP went from promising to disastrous after a questionable strategy call. Despite strong pace and qualifying well, a poorly timed pitstop left him stuck in traffic and unable to challenge for points.
Formula 1

Piastri Delighted After Claiming Maiden Win in Hungary

2 Mins read
Piastri claims his first ever F1 victory in a thrilling Hungarian GP, leading a dominant 1-2 result for McLaren.
Formula 1

2024 Hungarian Grand Prix: Norris On Pole After Wet-to-Dry Dramatic Session

4 Mins read
Lando Norris snatches dramatic pole in Hungary! McLaren lock out front row as rain shakes up qualifying session. Verstappen starts P3, Hamilton P6. Read more with our qualifying report!