Formula 1 News

Hulkenberg future still up in the air

A return to Force India seems "difficult" for the German.
Thursday, October 24, 2013

GREATER NOIDA, India, Oct 24, 2013 (AFP) - The sweepstakes to get Hulkenberg services are still on with no clear information about his destination for 2014. To make things more interesting, the Sauber driver said on thrursday that it would be difficult for him to make a return to his former team Force India as speculation mounts over his next Formula One deal.

The 26-year-old German has been in the news lately after a hot streak of form in the last few races that has seen him move up to the 10th place in the driver's standings.

A return to Force India, the team he left last year, was widely reported though Hulkenberg himself has not ruled out staying at Sauber.

"It (a possible return to Force India) is difficult," Hulkenberg told reporters at the Sauber paddock in Greater Noida, which is due to host the 16th race of the championship at the weekend.

"The championship is coming to a close now. We are under pressure to do something. It takes time. You have to see the bigger picture with the changes in regulations from next year. We will see what opportunities we have," the Sauber driver said.

With top 10 finishes in the last four races, Hulkenberg has scripted a remarkable turnaround, making him the driver to watch out for in the F1 circles.

Recent reports have talked about his possible move to Lotus to replace former world champion Kimi Raikkonen who has announced a high-profile return to Ferrari next year.

Hulkenberg was also rumoured to make a sensational late switch to Ferrari with Fernando Alonso having decided to take up the reins at McLaren.

The lanky German however played down the hype around him on the track and off it.

"All this talk (of being a hot property), doesn't do anything to me. I am enjoying myself in the car and the team. Yes, I am hungry for more success. The better we perform, the better the results that will show."

Hulkenberg admitted his confidence as also that of his team had gone up since the ninth race of the season in July in Nurburgring where Sauber finished 10th.

His best show so far this season came this month in Yeongam, South Korea where he held off Mercedes's Lewis Hamilton and Alonso to finish fourth.

"When the performance is better, the confidence goes up. We have improved step by step, so it's been a sort of gradual thing for us."

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