F1 teams have ‘questionable taste’ over drivers, says Nico Hulkenberg

Hulkenberg is contemplating a move to IndyCar

Sarah Rendell
Thursday 28 October 2021 15:16
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<p>Nico Hulkenberg had an underwhelming F1 career</p>

Nico Hulkenberg had an underwhelming F1 career

Nico Hulkenberg says Formula 1 teams have “questionable” taste in drivers as the bottom half of the sport isn’t high quality.

Hulkenberg’s career in the F1 didn’t live up to the hype that was promised. For the 2020 and 2021 seasons he has been a reserve driver for Aston Martin and despite some impressive driving when he’s been on the track, he has remained on the sidelines. He’s now potentially leaving the F1 behind in favour of IndyCar racing but has shared his opinions on the sport.

He told motorsport.com: “Yeah, definitely. I’ve got to be realistic there, that this train [to be an F1 starter again] probably has left, especially, given today’s current situation. It is what it is. Obviously as a driver you’re part of the process of the decision, but the teams ultimately take the decisions, and some teams have some questionable taste or decision-making!

“And yeah, it’s a bit of an interesting situation in F1 in general at the moment. I feel like the top 10 drivers, maybe 12, they’re really high quality, and real top-notch drivers.

“And then the bottom half, the quality is not as high as it used to be. And there is a lot of other factors in there. So obviously, from my point of view it’s a little sad and disappointing to see that, but that’s just the way it is.”

Hulkenberg alluded to some drivers being chosen on account of the sponsorships they bring or other connections, rather than their on-track quality.

If an IndyCar racing deal is struck is yet to be seen but Hulkenberg added he is excited at the prospect of racing again. Romain Grosjean made the same move over and has had an impressive rookie season but Hulkenberg says the Frenchman hasn’t been the inspiration for the move.

He said: “It’s not Romain, it’s just my desire still to race a single-seater car at the most competitive level possible that is available to me. And those cars are pretty cool, the racing is good. It looks very enjoyable and fun.”

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