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Podium bonus for Hulkenberg? Steiner grants insights – WhatsNew2Day


With his seventh place at the Australian Grand Prix, Nico Hulkenberg provided the first big exclamation mark since his return to Formula 1. In an exclusive interview with RTL/ntv and sport.de, his team boss Günther Steiner revealed how he looks at the start of the season for the reactivated veteran, who took over the Haas cockpit from Mick Schumacher at the beginning of the year.

The trend for Nico Hülkenberg is clear: After 15th place at the start in Bahrain and 12th place in Saudi Arabia, a strong seventh place followed in Australia, which gave him his first six World Championship points in the Haas car.

The 35-year-old will primarily be judged by the kind of results that were clearly demanded by team manager Günther Steiner in advance. In addition, Steiner also praised the only regular German Formula 1 driver for his previous work ethic.

“I think Nico is comfortable with us. The team and the technicians love working with him. He’s very demanding, which is what he’s supposed to be! He’s a great help for the team to bring his experience to bear on us up front,” said the South Tyrolean in an interview RTL/ntv and sport.de.

Haas plan with Hulkenberg “worked”

Last year, in his capacity as team boss, Steiner was asked how he could make the US racing team better. As is well known, he decided against continuing to work with Mick Schumacher and instead relied on Hülkenberg, who had already made over 180 Formula 1 starts in his CV to date.

The sporting progress since then has been unmistakable for Steiner: “It worked – hopefully. And I’m confident that it will stay that way.”

A positive atmosphere quickly developed with Hülkenberg, which should be further optimized in the course of the 2023 season: “I let him work because I like how he works with the boys, that we are making progress as a team. When I need him, he’s there for me – and if he needs me, I’ll be there for him. The relationship is very easy for me.”

The big sporting goal for the current season is for both Haas and Nico Hülkenberg personally to finally get the first podium. Steiner even admitted that there is a fixed premium in the Emmericher’s working paper for a top 3 placement.

“I’m not talking about driver contracts, but he’ll definitely get something – I can be that open, he won’t be angry. He gets more than a bottle of beer or wine,” said Steiner with a smile on his face.

Steiner on victory with Haas: “It will happen at some point”

The 58-year-old continued: “There’s always an incentive, but it’s not just material for Nico. You know he’s a very good Formula 1 driver, but he’s never been on the podium. For him That would also be a crowning glory for his career.”

At the same time, a podium finish would also mean something new for the Haas racing team, as Steiner himself knows very well: “It would not only be nice for him, it would also be nice for Haas. We already have a pole position and a fastest race lap. We’re missing the podium and then the win. You have to work to get it there. And then it will happen at some point, I’m sure of it.”

With regard to a contract extension with Nico Hülkenberg beyond 2023, the Haas team boss was still closed. It is still far too early in the season to make concrete considerations in one direction or the other.

“It depends on the performance, whether we’re happy with it or not. You also have to see what alternatives are there, that’s what it’s all about. Sometimes it’s also important to stick to the status quo and get peace in the hut. Over We haven’t talked about drivers or extensions at the moment,” Steiner clarified for both Nico Hülkenberg and the second Haas driver, Kevin Magnussen.

Felix Görner conducted the conversation with Günther Steiner

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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