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Nico Hulkenberg

Hulkenberg makes bold Haas claim after 'lethal' British GP

The Haas racer banked a second successive sixth-place finish during the British Grand Prix, following on from Austria.

Hulkenberg FP1 Silverstone
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Nico Hulkenberg has claimed that Haas is fighting to be the fifth-fastest team in F1 following an impressive British Grand Prix.

Armed with fresh upgrades at Silverstone, Hulkenberg out-qualified both works Ferrari cars with sixth on the grid and then converted this into a second-successive P6 finish following on from Austria.

The 16 points alone scored by Hulkenberg in these two races are as many as the team had accumulated in the previous 33 races since the start of 2023, vaulting the team up to seventh in the constructors' championship, just behind RB after Kevin Magnussen also added four points for eighth in Austria.

Haas was considered among the bottom five teams at the start of the season, with Red Bull, Mercedes, Ferrari, McLaren and Aston Martin the so-called 'big five', although the latter's progress has stalled this year. 

Reflecting on the race, Hulkenberg believes the American squad are now fighting to be considered fifth-best.

"It is a nice rewarding feeling to get points again, P6 two times in a row," Hulkenberg told media including RacingNews365. 

"It is unexpected, but deserved as we worked for it, we stayed clean with no mistakes, and had a good strategy, but the best of all though is that the performance update we've had really did something to the car.

"I genuinely think we're in the fight for the fifth-fastest team now with Aston Martin, Alpine and others, I think we are there.

"We have been pretty consistent this season, and I think we can hold on to that."

'Lethal' conditions

Hulkenberg is renowned as a strong driver in slick conditions, famously taking his sole pole position in a wet-dry climate  at the 2010 Brazilian Grand Prix. 

However, the German felt the conditions at Silverstone were bordering on "lethal" after rain fell halfway through the race, before quickly drying again, forcing the change to dry tyres from intermediates.

"It is pretty uncomfortable turning into Copse at 300kph with rain on your visor and not knowing, 'Am I going to be in the wall or am I going to make the corner?" he added.

"Driving with slicks and that grip level, it is really lethal and challenging, and that is why the race focus-wise and mentally was pretty tough and demanding. 

"But we got the timing well of both stops, hence the reward and the result."

Also interesting:

In the latest podcast, Ian, Sam and Nick discuss the British GP and Hamilton's emotional return to winning ways. Hamilton's journey since 2021 is discussed, as is Lando Norris' BIGGEST hurdle and Sergio Perez entering the Red Bull danger zone!

Rather watch than listen to the podcast? Click here.

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