Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg has said he is “gutted” how his German Grand Prix ended after crashing out of the race.
Hulkenberg had gambled on changing conditions during the race and at one stage he was in second place but he was then passed by the Mercedes pair of Valterri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton, dropping him to fourth.
Fourth would have been good enough for Hulkenberg’s best result of the season but on lap 40 he crashed at the last corner and got stuck in the gravel denying him a home race finish for the first time in his career.
“It’s a tough one to take. I’m upset for myself, the team and for Renault because they deserved an excellent result today.” commented Hulkenberg.
“It’s one of those days where you have to make it stick, and I’m just gutted with how it ended especially in front of the home crowd.”
A number of drivers were caught out in the same spot as Hulkenberg with Charles Leclerc retiring in the same spot earlier in the race.
Lewis Hamilton also went off in the same corner, although he was able to get his car back to the pits despite having damaged his front wing.
Discussing his accident, Hulkenberg said: “I lost the rear a bit, went into a spin so I opened the steering and went onto the black tarmac.”
“It was like ice there and by that point I couldn’t stop the car.”
“We were doing a phenomenal job, strategy was very difficult so it hurts and it will hurt even more tomorrow.”
Positives despite disappointment
Hulkenberg’s teammate Daniel Ricciardo also retired from the race and with a number of the midfield teams getting big points it is an opportunity missed for Renault.
“We missed an opportunity for big points over our direct competitors, but there are certainly positives from the weekend.” said Renault Team Principal, Cyril Abiteboul.
“It’s difficult to take as it was an exciting race and we’d have liked to have been part of it until the end.”
We want to taste being higher on merit more regularly. It doesn’t deter from our focus of pushing on and building a more competitive car.”