Hulk not feeling ‘love and harmony’ in Renault car

Date published: April 27 2019

Nico Hulkenberg said he was not at "harmony" with his Renault car after his Q1 elimination in Baku.

Nico Hulkenberg just isn’t feeling the love from his R.S.19 after a Q1 elimination at the Azerbaijan GP.

The Renault man went into the session confident, having claimed on Thursday that the team’s pace is strong at every track they have visited so far in 2019.

But, all that went out of the window when the German fell at the first hurdle of a marathon qualifying session in Baku. While also hinting at the loss of FP1 as being a contributing factor to his struggles, he insisted that this was not an excuse, and his confidence was just not there.

“It’s just a lack of confidence,” Hulkenberg told Sky Sports F1 in the Baku paddock.

“I didn’t really feel at home and happy inside the car at any point this weekend and I didn’t feel the love and the harmony between the car and myself.

“And on a track like this you start paying a big price. Missing FP1 wasn’t great but it’s not an excuse as it was the same for all of us. It did hurt us more as we are a little out of it with the set-up of the car.

“We’ve always been playing catch up this weekend and haven’t really caught it.”

Asked if Renault’s issues are track specific, Hulkenberg replied: “Maybe. This seems to be the first sort of hiccup where we are so far off the pace.

“Mine and Daniel’s [Ricciardo] comments are pretty similar. We are looking for grip and just can’t find it.

“We need to investigate after this weekend.

“For tomorrow, we know Baku can be a crazy race and you have got to be in it right for the end. We will still race hard tomorrow.”

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