Hulkenberg eager for more Haas upgrades to ‘edge us ahead again’ after points near-miss in Miami GP

MIAMI, FLORIDA - MAY 04: Nico Hulkenberg of Germany driving the (27) Haas F1 VF-24 Ferrari on track

Haas driver Nico Hulkenberg has set his sights on another package of updates at the upcoming Imola round after narrowly missing out on a points finish in Sunday’s Miami Grand Prix.

While Hulkenberg added to the team’s tally in the Sprint, where he came home a fine seventh, the German had to settle for 11th at the end of an action-packed Grand Prix – crossing the line just over a second behind Alpine’s Esteban Ocon.

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Having scored three points finishes in the five races before the visit to Miami, Hulkenberg hopes the latest set of developments for the VF-24 – due to arrive at Emilia-Romagna – can “edge us ahead again” in what has been a tight midfield battle so far this season.

Offering his thoughts after the Grand Prix, Hulkenberg reflected: “A good weekend… obviously it would have been the icing on the cake to get another points finish today.

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“Unfortunately, the first half of the race, the first stint and then the first part of the second stint, we weren’t strong enough when there was still a lot of fuel in the car. I was struggling for grip and then balance, and we weren’t quick enough in that part of the race.

“The VSC wasn’t great but then the Safety Car later, we swapped to a two-stop and that kind of put us back on the map, some good racing afterwards. I actually enjoyed the race, I don’t think we could have done anything different or better, so that’s where we were.”

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Asked whether it feels like some momentum is building at Haas, given his string of early-season points finishes, he added: “There’s definitely some, for sure.

“In Imola we’re going to get some more upgrades to complete that kind of package that we were building since Shanghai, so hopefully those can edge us a little bit ahead again and put us a little bit closer to the RBs, because they look really strong at the moment.”

2024 Miami Grand Prix: Magnussen collision knocks Sargeant out of the race – and triggers Safety Car

It was a more challenging weekend for team mate Kevin Magnussen, who picked up several penalties during the Sprint via wheel-to-wheel battling with Lewis Hamilton and was sanctioned again in the Grand Prix for an incident with Logan Sargeant.

Magnussen eventually came home 18th out of 19 finishers, but was demoted to the bottom of the order when the stewards handed him a 10-second penalty for thumping Sargeant’s car through Turn 2/3 and sending the American into retirement.

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Giving a short summary of events, Magnussen said: “Not a good day, again. Hopefully I can get some clarity on things going forward. What happened today is, of course, not good. Nonetheless, we move on and try to have a better weekend next weekend.”

Thanks to Hulkenberg’s Sprint points, Haas remain a solid seventh in the constructors’ standings, 12 points behind RB and six points ahead of Alpine, while Williams and Kick Sauber are still yet to score.



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