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3 Valtteri Bottas

Hulkenberg 'fairly confident'

Thursday 13th March 2014

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Hulkenberg 'fairly confident'

Hulkenberg 'fairly confident'

Nico Hulkenberg has no major concerns about Force India's form ahead of the opening grand prix of this season.

Back with Force India after a year with Sauber, Hulkenberg and his team demonstrated both reliability and pace during pre-season testing.

The team was second to Williams in the number of laps completed in Bahrain while both Hulkenberg and his team-mate Sergio Perez finished inside the top ten on the timesheets.

"I'm not nervous, quite relaxed in general," Hulkenberg told Crash.net.

"I think we can be fairly confident; winter testing has gone fairly smoothly for us if I compare it to some other teams so from that point of view I think we are as well prepared as we can be.

"It's still going to be challenging, this weekend can hold a lot of surprises. We can talk a lot in theory but we just have to get going now, start the season and see what happens really."

Pressed as to whether his team's strengths lay in qualifying or race-pace, Hulkenberg said: "I'm not sure on that.

"I didn't get a proper go on a one-lap attempt but I think the car felt fairly OK for that, also in terms of balance. So I think there's no big issue but we've seen that there are some fast cars out there and where we fit in there I'm not quite sure."

However, at the end of it all, the German concedes that reliability will be the first - and more important - factor this weekend in Australia.

"Winter testing was pretty solid, especially the second Bahrain test," he added.

"We've been pretty strong and OK from that point of view but that doesn't mean we're immune to it and nothing happens over the next couple of days."

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