The Haas Formula 1 team boss describes expectations of their newcomer; Steiner makes it unequivocal: Hülkenberg will “need time” and has “two races” to perform. The German Nico Hülkenberg is back in the Formula 1 lineup, the F1 veteran succeeds Mick Schumacher at Haas.
Team boss Günther Steiner expects the returnee to settle in quickly. In addition, the Italian from South Tyrol talked about the driver lineup with Kevin Magnussen in an exclusive interview with RTL/ntv.
Nico Hülkenberg completed just four races in the last three seasons of Formula 1, yet Haas decided at the end of last year to sign the 35-year-old as a regular driver for 2023.
Team boss Günther Steiner expects “consistency” from Hülkenberg, as he revealed in an exclusive RTL/ntv interview with Formula 1 expert Felix Görner. The 57-year-old said the driver from Emmerich in Germany should “always get the best possible out of the car”.
In the upcoming season, Haas wants to take the next step forward in Formula 1. At the same time, however, Steiner revealed:
“I can’t say that I always expect points, because I don’t know how strong the car is.”
Hülkenberg must “always be there and consistently get the best out of the car – as often as possible,” Steiner explained. The Haas team boss reckons that Mick Schumacher’s successor will quickly get used to the level in Formula 1 again.
Hülkenberg gets “a couple of races”
“With Nico, I’m not too worried. Logically, we thought about what happens when someone hasn’t raced full-time for three years. But he has tested a few times. When he had to fill in for Sebastian Vettel at the beginning of the year last year, he did a super job,” Steiner praised.
In his estimation, Hülkenberg “will need a bit of time to adapt completely and get physically fit.” After all, some muscles can only be trained when driving Formula 1 cars.
“We have to give him a few races to get the maximum out of him. But he’s one of those guys who has driven different cars – not just Formula One, but sports cars as well.
“He’s pretty good at adapting to new things,” Steiner said, raising hopes of quick success for Hülkenberg.
Steiner does not expect team mate wars at Haas
The German drives alongside Kevin Magnussen at Haas. In the past, the two drivers had already clashed on the track. According to Hülkenberg, the incident at the Hungarian Grand Prix in June 2017 has since been resolved.
“The duel is nice and makes the sport interesting. It just mustn’t be at the expense of the team, that’s important. Usually it is at the expense of the team and sometimes you have to intervene,” Steiner knows from his experience as a team boss in Formula 1.
The official does not expect any major turbulence at Haas. “Kevin knows me in the meantime and I think I know Nico well enough that hopefully we won’t have any major problems,” says Steiner.