Nico Hulkenberg felt his drive in his final Formula 1 outing for Renault at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was a “worthy” effort, despite missing out on points.

Hulkenberg, who will be replaced by Esteban Ocon at Renault in 2020, looked on course to claim a point in 10th place in his final race for the French manufacturer - and potentially his F1 career - but was passed by McLaren’s Carlos Sainz on the last lap and ultimately finished 12th.

Although he failed to add to his season’s points tally for the team, Hulkenberg said he ended the Abu Dhabi season finale with “good feelings”.

“We threw everything at it today and it was a shame not to score any points,” Hulkenberg said.

“The one-stop strategy was hard to pull off and my tyres were degrading too much at the end.

“Still, we had positive race pace and were very much in the fight until the end. It was a worthy final race for me with the team. I crossed the line with good feelings.

“It’s been three good years with them and we’ve grown very close like a family. I’m grateful and thankful towards them for all the highs and lows we’ve had together and I wish them every success for the future.”

Teammate Daniel Ricciardo was 11th as Renault clinched fifth spot in the constructors’ championship ahead of Toro Rosso, with Daniil Kvyat limited to two points in ninth place.

“It was quite a standard race for me,” Ricciardo explained.

"We struggled a little on the hard tyre after the first stop, which was a shame, and at the end I tried to make up the ground on the faster tyre, but we just ran out of time.

“Although, looking at the bigger picture for us, it was a positive that we managed to secure fifth in the constructors’ championship, which was our goal coming into the weekend.

“We’re optimistic heading into the off-season and looking ahead for next season.”

 

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