Nico Hulkenberg is well positioned to secure some much needed points for himself and the Force India team after qualifying an eye-catching fifth place for the Monaco Grand Prix.
The German has endured a tough start to the 2016 season, scoring a top ten finish in Australia but failing to bother the points in the following four events.
However, with the Force India enjoying a competitive weekend with its recently updated VJM09 thus far in Monaco, the 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours winner saved his best for when it mattered with a 'spot on' lap that secured him fifth place on the grid.
“Ever since FP1, I've felt quite comfortable and happy inside the car. The car has performed well and we've managed to go with the track improvement, go with the track. My laps were pretty good – the final one was spot on so I'm pretty happy. It's a nice surprise. We were always, at least I was always, confident that we could make it inside the top ten, but fifth is a nice surprise.”
Still seeking his first F1 podium, six years after he made his F1 debut, Hulkenberg says the occasional unpredictability of Monaco isn't playing on his mind ahead of the race.
“To be honest, that's not on my mind at all because Monaco could be the most boring race, or it could be the most eventful race ever. There's some rain predicted overnight, so it could be a damp start – you never know here.
“We might have a good starting position here, but we still haven't won anything tomorrow. We've just got to do it all over again and do a good job.”