Bell: Hulkenberg will bring direction to Renault in 2017

Nico Hulkenberg's arrival at Renault ahead of the 2017 Formula 1 season will bring direction to the team, says chief technical officer Bob Bell

Bell: Hulkenberg will bring direction to Renault in 2017


Force India released the German from his contract, allowing him to complete the switch to the French manufacturer on a multi-year deal.


Renault was keen to sign an experienced driver for its second season since making Lotus its work outfit as it bids to climb up the pecking order.


Hulkenberg replaces Kevin Magnussen, who will race for Haas alongside Romain Grosjean next season, with 2016 rookie Jolyon Palmer retained by Renault.


"Nico will bring a very clear sense of direction in terms of where we need to take the car from a driver's perspective," Bell told Autosport.


"He's not going to tell us what shape to make the front wing but he'll be very clear about what we need to do to, what characteristics from the driver's perspective the car needs.


"We're moving to different tyres next year and to have someone of his experience will very much help us deal with that transition.


"His experience will help with how to get the best out of them and how to manage.


"So those are two areas where he could play a really critical role.


"And of course he'll be a focal point for the team to help motivate everybody and pull everybody forward."

Bell says now is the right time to bring in an experienced driver because the first season was always going to be tough and the gains that could have been made as a result were much smaller.


"It probably wouldn't have been all that valuable in 2016 to be honest," he said.


"But this year as we take another step forward, we're now into the territory where we need an experienced driver, one of his calibre to help us get the most out of that step we will take.


"He will help really ground us in terms of our understanding of where we are and what we need to do to move forward.


"He's going to be a very key element in the season for us."

shares
comments
Horner: Mercedes still favourite for 2017 F1 titles
Previous article

Horner: Mercedes still favourite for 2017 F1 titles

Next article

Mercedes' Pascal Wehrlein secures Sauber Formula 1 deal for 2017

Mercedes' Pascal Wehrlein secures Sauber Formula 1 deal for 2017
Why few could blame Leclerc for following the example of Hamilton’s exit bombshell Plus

Why few could blame Leclerc for following the example of Hamilton’s exit bombshell

OPINION: Ferrari's numerous strategy blunders, as well as some of his own mistakes, have cost Charles Leclerc dearly in the 2022 Formula 1 title battle in the first half of the season. Though he is locked into a deal with Ferrari, few could blame Leclerc if he ultimately wanted to look elsewhere - just as Lewis Hamilton did with McLaren 10 years prior

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat Plus

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat

After being ditched by McLaren earlier in his F1 career Sergio Perez fought his way back into a seat with a leading team. BEN EDWARDS thinks the same could be happening to another member of the current grid

Formula 1
Aug 8, 2022
How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay Plus

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay

Winner of 13 grands prix including Monaco and survivor of a life-changing plane crash, David Coulthard could be forgiven for having eased into a quiet retirement – but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, in fact he’s busier than ever, running an award-winning media company and championing diversity in motor racing. Not bad for someone who, by his own admission, wasn’t quite the fastest driver of his generation…

Formula 1
Aug 7, 2022
Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre? Plus

Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre?

Formula 1 has ambitious goals for improving its carbon footprint, but could this include banishing its favoured composite material? PAT SYMONDS considers the alternatives to carbonfibre and what use, if any, those materials have in a Formula 1 setting

Formula 1
Aug 6, 2022
How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir Plus

How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir

He’s fast, he’s smart, and he’s already shown he’s not going to let Max Verstappen intimidate him. George Russell won’t say it, but LUKE SMITH says he’s ready to take the lead at Mercedes when Lewis Hamilton moves on to a quieter life. And – whisper it – Mercedes and Lewis are starting to think so too

Formula 1
Aug 5, 2022
The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move Plus

The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move

Fernando Alonso’s bombshell switch to Aston Martin sent shockwaves through Formula 1, not least at Alpine that finds itself tangled in a contract standoff with Oscar Piastri. Not shy of a bold career move and with a CV punctuated by them, there were numerous hints that trouble was brewing

Formula 1
Aug 4, 2022
The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships Plus

The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships

OPINION: Ferrari's Formula 1 title hopes look all but over after another strategic blunder in last week's Hungarian Grand Prix denied Charles Leclerc the chance to fight for victory, while handing it to chief rival Max Verstappen. The Scuderia now faces intense scrutiny over what it must now do to finally become a genuine factor in championship battles

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2022
The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans revealed after Vettel’s decision Plus

The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans revealed after Vettel’s decision

OPINION: Sebastian Vettel is set to leave Formula 1 at the end of 2022 and will, rather shockingly, be replaced by Fernando Alonso at Aston Martin. But what about the final chapter of the other driver that defined the post-Michael Schumacher era? In Hungary, Lewis Hamilton spoke about his future in the context of Vettel’s upcoming departure, which offered clues on how long it will last

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2022