Hulkenberg: Monaco is usually a thrilling race, anything can happen

Hulkenberg: Monaco is usually a thrilling race, anything can happen

Nico Hulkenberg, Carlos Sainz, Renault
photo: Renault Sport

It was a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time for Nico Hulkenberg in Spain, as he eyes up a better run on the streets of his hometown.

What makes the Monaco Grand Prix a standout race?

Nothing compares to Monaco, there is no place like it. It’s the highlight of the year and the race I most look forward to. It’s just so unique and special in every aspect; the glitz, the glamour, the circuit itself, the whole vibe is amazing throughout the weekend. It’s one of those tracks which give you a sensation of speed and, in turn, a real buzz.

What’s it like to wrestle a Formula 1 car around the streets of Monaco?

From a physical point of view, it’s not the most demanding circuit, but it requires a lot of concentration, precision and discipline. It’s not a high G-force track, as it’s mainly low speed, but it’s full-on, a busy lap and means concentration levels have to be on point. Any error will put you in the wall and that means game over. You have to be confident as a driver in Monaco and believe in your car. It’s usually a thrilling race, anything can happen, even though overtaking is difficult. But that’s the challenge, and I really love racing at Monaco.

Nico Hulkenberg
photo: Renault Sport
How do you approach the weekend?

You build that confidence up in stages lap by lap, session by session. There isn’t much point in getting over excited, or confident too quickly because you’ll soon find yourself in the wall. Qualifying is where you need to peak and take those risks, getting closer to the barriers and on the limit. That’s when you find that buzz and that excites me.

Is it refreshing to stay at home during the weekend?

It’s a nice change up to the normal routine. It feels a bit strange to go home every night and between sessions, but I like that and it puts me at ease a little bit. I quite enjoy going out on the scooter or biking around the track.

What’s there to say about Spain?

It was frustrating as we’d got on top of the car and I was charged-up to work my way up the order. My focus is now Monaco.