Russian Around - Q&A with Nico Hülkenberg

Nico Hülkenberg returned to the points last time out, as attention switches quickly to the Sochi Autodrom and round sixteen of the 2018 Formula 1 season, the Russian Grand Prix.

Do you enjoy the Russian Grand Prix?

I enjoy travelling to Russia. It’s an interesting place with plenty going on and lots of things to do. Sochi is still a fairly new venue to the Formula 1 calendar, but it is an enjoyable circuit to drive, and the Russian atmosphere is always quite good.

What’s there to say about the Sochi Autodrom?
It’s one of the longer laps of the season, with lots of corners. That provides a challenge as you have to string together those combinations and get the sectors nailed perfectly; especially in qualifying. The track has a nice flow to it, it’s quick, and that’s why I like it. It’s a long straight off the line, before heavy braking into turn one followed by the long, on-going left-hander. It’s fast and flowing from there before the final sector which is a bit slower and features a couple of 90-degree turns. Rear tyre overheating is the main consideration for that part of the lap. Overall, though, it’s fun to drive.

What’s your record like in Russia?
I ended my bad run in Sochi last season by finishing eighth, which was my second points finish in Renault colours. I haven’t had the best luck in Russia up until that after a couple of retirements, but we’ve put that behind us now and we’ll be aiming for another strong finish this season as well.

What’s the post-Singapore mood?
It’s good to be back in the top ten after a difficult spell in our season. It’s important to score with both cars in our fight for fourth in the Constructors’ Championship, so we have to draw on the positives from that. Of course, you always want more, and I can only help but feel there was more out there for us in Singapore. We’ll take a point and aim for an improved outing in Russia.

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