Renault Sport director, Cyril Abiteboul is convinced 2017 will be a turning point for Renault F1 team.
“Nico [Hulkenberg] is ideal for us” declared the Frenchman speaking to the Austrian motorsport media outlet, Speedweek.
“A perfect blend of experience and is hungry for victories”
Nico Hulkenberg’s talent has often been admired over his years in F1, a driver that would shine if he just made it to a big team. A claim made by many F1 fans and pundits over the years, and for good reason until 2016 season.
The German driver has been consistently outperformed by his Mexican team mate this year, Sergio Perez. This has been a little surprising for many, but indeed Perez has beaten ‘the Hulk’ in both qualifying and in the races. Perez has also achieved podiums over the years whilst the German has yet to reach those steps.
This hasn’t blighted ‘The Hulk’s’ rep for the French team however. The latest works outfit in F1 is convinced their fortunes will turn around with next seasons rule shake up.
“We’ve recently seen we’re faster than Toro Rosso and Mclaren, we’ve even been on par with Williams. We’re fixed in the midfield.” appraised Cyril.
“On and off track we go forward. The factory in Enstone (UK) continues to be built with the flow of new employees slowly growing from our efforts started in Spring.
I’m particularly happy that we’re able to secure the services of Nico Hulkenberg. Nico is ideal for us, a perfect blend of experience and is hungry for victories.”
Hulkenberg himself agrees with a this positive outlook for the coming season.
“It’s always been my dream to drive for a factory team like Renault. The upcoming new F1 rules will change the sport a lot and I see this as a great opportunity for us.
I’m quite sure that Renault will play an important role in the coming years. I cannot wait any longer”
The big question is however, will he deliver a top drive now he’s finally got into a factory team? Obviously Renault will need to give him a decent car for 2017 onwards, but should they do this, there will be no hiding place for F1’s nearly man.