Hulkenberg departure took Force India by surprise

By on Saturday, February 2, 2013

Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley has said that the departure of Nico Hulkenberg took the team by surprise.

Hulkenberg left Force India to drive for Sauber from the start of this season.

"The idea of the Nico/Paul partnership not continuing into 2013 wasn't our plan," Fernley toldĀ Autosport.

"Obviously it slightly de-railed our programme."

Force India has yet to announce a second driver to partner Paul di Resta, with Fernley admitting that the plan had been to keep Jules Bianchi as reserve driver for two years.

"If we'd had an ideal world we'd have liked to run Jules for two years as a third driver."

"Is Jules ready to go into a primary seat? Yes, he is. Absolutely. But we've just got to make sure we tick all the boxes now."

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On this day
  • Graham Hill won the 1968 Monaco Grand Prix.
  • David Coulthard won the 2002 Monaco Grand Prix.
  • Graham Hill won the 1963 Monaco Grand Prix.
  • Ronnie Peterson won the 1974 Monaco Grand Prix.
  • Stirling Moss won the 1958 Dutch Grand Prix.
  • Nico Rosberg won the 2013 Monaco Grand Prix.