Sauber's Nico Hulkenberg
managed to take a 'hard earned point' during the 2013 F1 British Grand Prix
last weekend, despite suffering a slow puncture.
Tyres dominated the event at Silverstone, but through all the mayhem the German emerged to bring the underperforming and rather uncompetitive C32 home in the top-ten, matching what he had achieved in Malaysia and China.
Furthermore despite all the dramas and concerns about safety, Hulkenberg said he actually enjoyed the grand prix.
“The race today was a lot of fun. I had some good duels and was able to push to the limit. It was fun to drive the car on such a high-speed track like Silverstone,” he remarked.
“At a point in the race, I lost the overview of what was going on, with the two safety cars and lots of tyre debris on the track. I had a slow puncture during my second stint, which is why we had to pit earlier.
“I think our speed was what we expected it to be though, and overall was better than in qualifying on Saturday.”
Team-mate Esteban Gutierrez meanwhile had a more difficult afternoon and finished 14th, stopping twice due a tyre issue.
“It was a crazy race, because a lot of things happened and I just tried to focus and make the best out of the situation,” said the Mexican. “I had to pit because of a problem with my front left tyre. This also damaged my front wing, which forced me to pit again two laps later. This is something that needs to be looked into for safety reasons and also to avoid having a race that is defined by the tyres. The car was still a bit tricky to drive in the slow corners, but overall it was okay.”
“A hard earned point,” was how Sauber team principal, Monisha Kaltenborn summed-up the afternoon. "Nico did a good job and was unfortunately slowed down by a tyre issue. Esteban dropped back due to two unplanned pit stops, also to tyre problems.
“At the moment we cannot expect any miracles from the car, but this result will definitely lift the team spirit,” she concluded.