Nico Hulkenberg didn't expect his strong start to 2014 F1 season

Nico Hulkenberg is surprised by how competitive his Force India team has been in the early part of the new Formula 1 season

Nico Hulkenberg didn't expect his strong start to 2014 F1 season

The highly rated German rejoined Vijay Mallya's squad from Sauber over the winter and has finished inside the top six in each of the first four F1 races of 2014.

Hulkenberg lies a career-best fourth in the current championship, after holding off Valtteri Bottas's Williams to finish sixth in the recent Chinese Grand Prix.

He says no one could have expected Force India to make such a strong start to the campaign.

"I didn't expect it and I don't think you could have expected it as well," Hulkenberg said.

"Winter testing was good, but not that good.

"To come away with so many points is a big achievement."

Hulkenberg urged the Silverstone-based squad, which operates on a significantly smaller budget than the leading teams, to do its best to keep up in the development race and avoid slipping back as the season wears on.

"I don't see any obvious reason why we shouldn't be able to carry the good momentum, but like every year in Formula 1 it's pretty much a development race - you've got to keep bringing performance," Hulkenberg added.

"Maybe at the later point in the season the big teams with the bigger budgets will have more of an advantage, but I see ourselves in a very good position."

HOW HULKENBERG'S START TO 2014 COMPARES

Hulkenberg's current tally of 36 points makes 2014 by far his best start to an F1 season to date, as the table below shows:

Situation after four races: Year Team Points Position 2014 Force India 36 4th 2013 Sauber 5 14th 2012 Force India 2 16th 2010 Williams 1 15th 2011: Force India reserve, did not race 

Nico Hulkenberg's full career statistics on FORIX

shares
comments
Romain Grosjean glad he stayed quiet over Lotus F1 team pay issues

Previous article

Romain Grosjean glad he stayed quiet over Lotus F1 team pay issues

Next article

Alain Prost predicts Renault will catch Mercedes in F1 engine fight

Alain Prost predicts Renault will catch Mercedes in F1 engine fight
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Nico Hulkenberg
Author Ben Anderson
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Plus

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Plus

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb Plus

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen’s emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber team-mate’s own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here’s how Nick Heidfeld’s career was chilled by the Iceman

Formula 1
Apr 1, 2021