Hulkenberg blames Vettel for USGP retirement

Date published: October 23 2016

Nico Hulkenberg believes Sebastian Vettel was responsible for his DNF in Sunday’s United States GP as it “could have been avoided if Seb leaves a bit more space.”

Hulkenberg made contract with Valtteri Bottas on the opening lap at the Circuit of the Americas with both cars forced to pit.

But while Bottas escaped with a puncture, Hulkenberg had to retire his car as the steering arm was broken.

The Force India driver and his Williams counterpart were investigated by the stewards without further action, however, Hulkenberg reckons it was actually Vetel who as to blame.

He said: “I don’t think it was the Williams / Force India battle, it just happened to be there.

“We were obviously three in one corner, Seb on my outside, I was in the middle, Valtteri on the inside.

“But the way I saw it is Seb didn’t give me much room, he really turned in on me.

“I couldn’t pull out as I also had a car on the inside.

“He turned into me and I wasn’t able to back out because it happened too quickly.

“He then pushed me into Valtteri and that was basically the incident.

“It could have been avoided if Seb leaves a bit more space.”

As for the damage to his VJM09, Hulkenberg revealed that the impact had broken his steering arm.

“One of the steering arms was broken and you can’t race like that,” he said.

“It is not a quick fix so very frustrating.”