Hulkenberg reflects on "crazy and wild" 24 hours after F1 comeback

Nico Hulkenberg has called the last 24 hours "crazy and wild" after making his shock Formula 1 comeback with Racing Point on Friday at Silverstone

Hulkenberg reflects on "crazy and wild"  24 hours after F1 comeback

After Sergio Perez tested positive for COVID-19 and was forced to quarantine, Racing Point approached recent Renault F1 driver Hulkenberg to stand in for this weekend's British Grand Prix.

Hulkenberg abandoned plans for a GT car test at the Nurburgring to fly to the UK on Thursday evening before going to Racing Point's factory for a seat fitting and to finalise contract talks.

The German driver only got into the F1 paddock less than 10 minutes before the start of first practice when his COVID-19 test result was confirmed to be negative, but he managed to get out on-track soon after.

"The last 24 hours have been a bit special - crazy and wild," Hulkenberg explained.

"At 4:30pm yesterday afternoon I got the call, got the plane here, seat fitted until 2am tonight, 8am this morning into the simulator for an hour, bit of prep work.

"So it was a short night, but all worthwhile.

"Great effort by the team, I want to thank the team also, the night shift guys have done a great job to fit me in the car and even quite comfortably, and the FIA for turning it around so fast on the superlicence. It's been very special."

It marked Hulkenberg's first F1 outing since his final appearance for Renault at the end of the 2019 season, with the team dropping him in favour of Esteban Ocon for 2020.

INSIGHT: How Hulkenberg won the race against time for his shock F1 return

Hulkenberg admitted his body was already feeling the effects of the high G forces of driving an F1 car again, especially at Silverstone, one of the fastest tracks on the calendar.

"The G forces, it's tough to train for because it's so unique and so special," Hulkenberg said.

"Even though I'm in decent shape, this kind of G force, and especially around here, one of the fastest high speed tracks, in 35 degrees.

"I also chose the hottest day of the year in the UK so far. I've got the best of everything!"

Hulkenberg finished ninth in FP1 before improving to seventh in second practice, lapping just six-tenths shy of team-mate Lance Stroll, who set the fastest time of the day.

"You can see the huge potential, the car is massively fast," Hulkenberg said.

"I didn't exploit the soft tyre that well, I think I have a bit more in the bag, and need to use that tyre better.

"But that's what we're going to work on obviously through the night, and try to get the best possible from this weekend."

shares
comments
How Hulkenberg won the race against time for his shock F1 return
Previous article

How Hulkenberg won the race against time for his shock F1 return

Next article

F1 British Grand Prix qualifying: Start time, how to watch & more

F1 British Grand Prix qualifying: Start time, how to watch & more
Why Albon won't be "throwing around laptops" to gain a 2023 F1 edge Plus

Why Albon won't be "throwing around laptops" to gain a 2023 F1 edge

OPINION: At the Williams 2023 Formula 1 season launch, Alex Albon’s easy-going nature was again a point of focus. But does being “too nice” really matter in modern F1? Albon’s own expressions put that in an intriguing new light

How the last Sauber-built Alfa offers F1 2023 evolution clues Plus

How the last Sauber-built Alfa offers F1 2023 evolution clues

Alfa Romeo has become the first Formula 1 team to reveal a new car for 2023, in addition to a fresh livery. This offered a first look at some of the understated changes produced by the revised regulations, along with points of convergence in the second year of the ground effect rules

The pioneering F1 car that preceded Lotus’s terminal decline Plus

The pioneering F1 car that preceded Lotus’s terminal decline

In the hands of Ayrton Senna the actively suspended 99T would be the last F1 race-winning Lotus but, as STUART CODLING reveals, it was a complicated machine that caused more problems than it solved

Formula 1
Feb 5, 2023
How Tyrrell became a racing Rubik’s cube as it faded out of F1 Plus

How Tyrrell became a racing Rubik’s cube as it faded out of F1

Formula 1’s transformation into a global sport meant the gradual extinction for a small team determined to stay true to its low-budget roots. But Tyrrell would eventually be reborn as a world-beating outfit again, explains MAURICE HAMILTON, albeit in different colours…

Formula 1
Feb 4, 2023
Assessing Hamilton's remarkable decade as a Mercedes F1 driver Plus

Assessing Hamilton's remarkable decade as a Mercedes F1 driver

Many doubted Lewis Hamilton’s move from McLaren to Mercedes for the 2013 Formula 1 season. But the journey he’s been on since has taken the Briton to new heights - and to a further six world championship titles

Formula 1
Feb 2, 2023
Why new look Haas is a litmus test for Formula 1’s new era Plus

Why new look Haas is a litmus test for Formula 1’s new era

OPINION: With teams outside the top three having struggled in Formula 1 in recent seasons, the rules changes introduced in 2022 should have more of an impact this season. How well Haas does, as the poster child for the kind of team that F1 wanted to be able to challenge at the front, is crucial

Formula 1
Feb 2, 2023
The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff Plus

The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff

OPINION: Although the central building blocks for Mercedes’ recent, long-lasting Formula 1 success were installed before he joined the team, Toto Wolff has been instrumental in ensuring it maximised its finally-realised potential after years of underachievement. The 10-year anniversary of Wolff joining Mercedes marks the perfect time to assess his work

Formula 1
Feb 1, 2023
The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate Plus

The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate

Alpine’s signing of Pierre Gasly alongside Esteban Ocon revives memories of a famous all-French line-up, albeit in the red of Ferrari, for BEN EDWARDS. Can the former AlphaTauri man's arrival help the French team on its path back to winning ways in a tribute act to the Prancing Horse's title-winning 1983?

Formula 1
Jan 31, 2023