Nico Hulkenberg has fond memories of Interlagos, having captured a remarkable pole in 2010 and led laps at the Brazilian track in both 2012 and 2014. His 2018 visit, however, got off to a bad start when he crashed heavily in FP2 after getting a little greedy over the kerbs at the final corner…
“I ran a bit too wide at the exit of the last corner, took a little bit too much kerb there, wanted a bit too much probably,” said the Renault driver, whose shunt came on his first flying run of the session.
“The car bottomed out, and from there it was done, I was a passenger. Once I bottomed out that really pulled me out of the track and onto the grass. Obviously no grip on the grass, and it was inevitable from there that I would hit the wall. It’s a pity and it’s frustrating. Obviously it’s far from ideal to crash on a Friday, it’s not what I want, but unfortunately it happened today.”
Thankfully for The Hulk, his car suffered no major damage in the incident that the Renault technicians wouldn't be able to fix overnight – though the German isn’t expecting to figure near the front of the grid this weekend anyway.
Asked about how he expected the rest of the weekend to go, Hulkenberg, who is a solid seventh in the drivers’ standings, said: “Tricky. I think we don’t look as competitive as in Mexico and in Austin. A little bit as expected, this track is a bit more challenging for us in the balance that we face. Challenging weekend ahead.”