Renault Sport Formula One Team’s Nico Hülkenberg has qualified in the top ten for the third time in a row, placing eighth on the grid for tomorrow’s VTB Russian Grand Prix. Jolyon Palmer looked also to have the pace to be in the top ten for tomorrow’s race, despite missing much of the FP3 session as a power unit was changed, however contact with a kerb on his final Q1 lap pitched him into the barriers and out of qualifying.

Nico Hülkenberg, #27, R.S.17-02, Q: P8 1:35.285 FP3: P7 1:35.662
“I think that was the best we could do with the package we have currently, so it’s been a satisfying afternoon from that point of view. The challenge will be in the race; our pace then has been trickier so far this season so tomorrow will be the true teller of where we are in the car with our recent upgrade. We’ll push, as always, and hopefully come away with some nice points.”

Jolyon Palmer, #30, R.S.17-03, Q: P16 1:36.462 FP3: P20: no time set
“I have to say a big thank you to all my crew and everyone in the garage who has worked so hard over this weekend, they really have been amazing and now they have a bit more work to do. I was pushing hard and took too much kerb which pitched me into the barriers. I was on the back foot slightly with missing FP3, but anything can happen in the race, so I hope for a better day.”

Alan Permane, Sporting Director:
There’s more to come...

How was qualifying for the team?
It’s good to have a car in the top ten once again; Nico has established himself as a regular Q3 runner which is excellent, and we’re confident that there is more to come from the car as we upgrade it in the future. Unfortunately for Jo, he easily had the pace to charge for Q3 but it was not to be today.

What are the considerations for tomorrow’s race?
Nico’s race looks a straightforward one given his qualifying position. For Jolyon, he is out of position so we will be looking for every strategic opportunity to make the most of the pace of the car.