Hulkenberg anticipating tough defensive work

By on Saturday, June 20, 2015
Sahara Force India

Sahara Force India

Nico Hulkenberg believes he will have a tough race defending from theoretically quicker cars after he secured Force India's best qualifying result of 2015 at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Hulkenberg qualified in fifth position but expects to face pressure from rivals who will start further back.

"I’m feeling very happy with how things went today," he said.

"We knew we had a good chance to be in the top ten, so to be starting in fifth place is an excellent effort by the team. Q1 was fun on the drying track, but in Q2 and Q3 I found a really good rhythm and was able to deliver the laps when it mattered.

"I’m feeling happy and confident in the car at the moment and I think that showed with the result today.

"Tomorrow will be a tough race because there are some quick cars behind us, but we’ve already built a good foundation for a strong race. This track can sometimes spring surprises and we still don’t know what the weather will do tomorrow, but if we maximise things I’m sure we can score some good points."

Team-mate Sergio Perez dropped out in Q1 and says that poor track position scuppered his chances of making progress.

"Today was quite a challenge on the drying track and it was not easy to find a good position and build up the right rhythm," he said.

"Unfortunately, with the track getting faster and faster towards the end of Q1, the last lap was the one that had to count. I found myself right behind Fernando [Alonso] and I spent the whole lap behind him. I couldn't get any closer as I would have lost all my downforce, and I had Kimi [Raikkonen] behind me so I couldn't drop back."

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