Former F1 driver Ralf Schumacher believes Nico Hulkenberg is
“hoping” there is a way he can get out of Haas. German driver
Hulkenberg rejoined the F1 grid this term after three years on the
sidelines and has impressed with his outright speed in qualifying
for the American-owned outfit. But struggles in race trim,
primarily with excessive tyre degradation which has left Hulkenberg
and teammate Kevin Magnussen regularly fighting a losing battle for
points. A recent upgrade package has seemingly failed to address
those issues and with Hulkenberg already signed up for another year
with the team, Schumacher – as part of his regular Sky Germany
column – said: “Haas has given Hulkenberg the opportunity to return
to F1. Therefore, I think it is fair and good that he has stayed
with Haas. “Hulkenberg realises that Haas is at an impasse with the
whole concept. No matter what they do, Haas is probably no longer
good enough to compete in the midfield. That’s unfortunate for
Hulkenberg. “You get the feeling that he’s dealing with the
situation openly and honestly, but that maybe he’s also hoping that
there’s a way he can get out of it.” ‘He’s not getting any younger’
Despite scoring 12 points this term, Haas finds itself at the
bottom of the Constructors’ standings after slumping in the
development race compared to rivals. On Hulkenberg’s demeanour,
Schumacher added: “His statements, his facial expression, they
speak volumes. “I understand him, because he’s not getting any
younger. He can still do it, but after two hundred GPs he still
hasn’t been on the podium. Then you understand he gets impatient.
“A lot of money needs to be invested in Haas. One option would be
for Gene Haas to sell the team, or for them to get a development
partner. It is not possible to buy some parts here and there,
cobble it together and perform.”

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