Hulkenberg was ‘forced’ into late pit-stop

Date published: August 9 2020 - Jamie Woodhouse

Nico Hulkenberg PA

Nico Hulkenberg has revealed that his tyres had blistered too much at Silverstone, forcing him into a late stop.

The German driver, who is standing in for Sergio Perez at Racing Point, qualified a sensational P3 for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix.

But he was unable to end that record run of races without a podium, which now stretches to 178, after crossing the line P7.

He would finish behind team-mate Lance Stroll, and that disappointing position came about after Hulkenberg was “forced” to make a late stop with his tyres causing major vibrations.

But he did add that he would most likely not have made it to the end without that stop.

“We were kind of forced to pit off the prime set,” Hulkenberg told Sky F1.

“I think we got a couple of nice big blisters on both rear tyres. The vibration just gets so quickly out of hand that within two, three laps, it just sky-rocketed.

“I don’t think the tyre would have survived to the end. It was a pity. First half of the race was very under control, very managed.

“The second I got onto the second prime set, that just felt like a different set of tyres, a different compound, and it just didn’t work in the end.”

Hulkenberg never got to start the British Grand Prix last weekend, meaning the 70th Anniversary GP was his first f1 race since the 2019 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

And he admitted that physically it was a challenge to complete the race.

“Luckily these cars have the headrest quite close, so I could rest my head a lot,” he said.

“The whole body, back muscles, even the seat is quite tight around the glutes. I’m definitely going to be a bit sore tomorrow morning.

“It was a quiet race, no big fighting, no safety cars, but I’m actually quite grateful. I’m glad it wasn’t too action-packed, because it was enough as it was probably.”

Get your hands on the official Racing Point 2020 collection via the Formula 1 store

Asked if he could make a third Racing Point appearance in Perez’s place at the Spanish Grand Prix, Hulkenberg said: “I don’t know the full picture, to be honest yet.

“We’ll find out more in the next couple of days and as we get closer to the weekend, it will develop.

“I guess I’ll be present just in case he’s not able to race. I guess I’ll be there to replace him again. I think it will come down to again a late decision on Thursday.”

Follow us on Twitter @Planet_F1 and like our Facebook page.