Despite having pounded in countless laps of the Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya the Spanish Grand Prix venue hasn’t been too kind to Nico Hülkenberg in the past, with tenth place finishes in 2012 and 2014 the best in his back catalogue. Time to do better….
What’s the mood headed to Spain?
I’m feeling good. The car is improving at every race and we can deliver. I spent two days at Enstone last week and even some occasional British rain wasn’t an issue.
What do you think of the event?
Barcelona and the surrounding area is great. There’s a great Spanish vibe, it’s right by the sea with lots of good restaurants with nice food and paella. I always enjoy visiting there. There’s always a decent turnout of fans, which means I have to leave for the track a little earlier in the morning to avoid the traffic, but it’s great to see that enthusiasm.
What are your thoughts of the track when you’re behind the wheel?
It’s a track we all know really well after testing there so much so all the engineers have a lot of data and knowledge about it. I personally like the layout, especially the first sector with turns 1-2-3, which have added value thanks to the fastest cars this season. It’s a physical circuit with all the high speed right handers so you need a strong neck; you’ll really know about it by the end of the race.
What’s notable over the 4.7km?
The first turns are almost like one corner as turns 1-2-3 seem linked as if you get 1-2 wrong you’ll be in a bad place for turn 3 which is high speed and quite a challenge. Sector three is very technical, twisty and slow, especially through the last chicane, but it’s the key to a quick lap time so you need to master it.