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F1 Belgian GP: Podium denied but Hulkenberg produces best since 2013

Though not the elusive podium he is still seeking in F1, fourth in the Belgian Grand Prix marks Nico Hulkenberg's best result since 2013.
Force India has ascended to a landmark peak of fourth in the Formula 1 constructors' standings as a fourth and fifth place finish for Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez in the Belgian Grand Prix proved enough to surpass Williams.

Helped in part by early delays for Max Verstappen and both Ferraris, Hulkenberg and Perez showed solid pace all afternoon to end the race as 'best of the rest' behind Nico Rosberg, Daniel Ricciardo and Lewis Hamilton.

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With the pair accumulating 22 points between – compared with Williams' five -, Force India has leapfrogged its rivals to assume fourth in the standings, though it could have been more had Hulkenberg been able to capitalise on a superb start that had him running second early on.

Well positioned to secure an elusive maiden podium, Hulkenberg found his advantage negated by the red flag stoppage, which allowed Hamilton back into contention. Nevertheless, he was thrilled with the result, his best since the 2013 Korean Grand Prix.

“I had a mega start, a mega first lap. There was a bit of a thingy going on between Max and the Ferraris I believe and I was able to profit from that and found myself in second. On that super-soft tyres it was going actually well, I was behind Nico, he was pulling away from me a little bit but I was pulling away from the people behind me, which was really important at that stage of the race.

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“Unfortunately the red flag came and neutralised the race, which was a bit frustrating at that moment. I would have preferred not to have that red flag but that's racing.”

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August 29, 2016 4:31 AM

HULK is way comfortable in second place, in when race started. If red flag not there, he could have 2 or 3 position easily. Again HULK Unlucky to profit from situation. But Force India driver did great racing & give team much needed result. These driver combination is great. A very good small team who raised bar for themselves last three years. Would like to see some big sponsor with them for 2017, that will help them to go for next step. Love those nostril nose front face on car (look like anaconda face). Hope they keep same look for 2017 with different livery.

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