Successive strong performances at Magny-Cours and Silverstone have given Nelson Piquet Jr the confidence to suggest that he may again provide suitable back-up to Renault team leader Fernando Alonso at this weekend's German Grand Prix.

The Brazilian endured a torrid start to his Formula One career, but appeared to turn the corner with a solid qualifying and race performance in France, culminating in his first points of the year. He then followed that up with a similarly strong showing in Britain, before becoming one of the many victims of the unpredictable weather conditions.

"I was obviously disappointed to retire from the race, especially from such a strong position with a car that was handling well," Piquet commented, "We were on course for a great result, but I went off in the heavy rain which flooded the circuit.

"Still, I take some positives from Silverstone because the car was good, we improved it throughout the weekend, and I qualified well inside the top ten, just behind Fernando. For me, the priority is to keep learning and improving as a driver. We have shown in the last two races how competitive the car is, so now we have to build on that and approach the coming races determined to score points so that we can improve our position in the championship. The European part of the season will take us to some tracks that I've raced at before, which should make things a bit easier."

Hockenheim is one of those venues already stored in the Piquet memory, although he failed to convert strong qualifying pace into GP2 victory there, and the F1 rookie is looking forward to going back.

"It's a fun track to drive, although it's quite different in an F1 car," he noted after the recent pre-race test, "It's a demanding circuit with several heavy braking zones, so you need a well-balanced car that is stable under braking, but which also has good traction and grip out of the slow corners. It's quite a rewarding place to drive and, as we tested there last week, the car should be well sorted already when we start free practice on Friday.

"As always, we will be aiming for points. I'm very motivated for this race and really looking forward to racing in Germany. I expect the midfield battle to be incredibly tight once again but, if we can reach Q3 in qualifying, I think that points will be a realistic target. The whole team is focused and working hard for this coming weekend, and it would be great to reward everyone with a strong result."

 

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