If you were looking for a driver to fill your seat in 2014, you’d have to give serious consideration to Nico Hulkenberg—even Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso believes him to be one of the best drivers on the grid today:
“For me Nico is one of the best drivers on the grid,” Alonso said.
“I said that three years ago, and now everyone seems to have discovered him.
“He is doing a great job, [which] I think is no surprise – he was doing an amazing job [in 2010 with Williams].
“Getting pole position here [in Brazil], in difficult conditions, was a sign of his talent.
“Hopefully we see him in a competitive car in the future.”
It’s hard to understand why McLaren would discount Hulkenberg so quickly and publicly blame his height and weight as the reason they see no reason to pursue him. Surely the car can be altered slightly as it is a custom affair?
McLaren is looking for the next big thing and many believe Hulkenberg is the man who potentially could take the fight to Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel and possibly even win. One would think McLaren would be interested.
Unfortunately it looks like Hulkenberg may have to wait mired in the midfield for a day when a top team actually wants a top-shelf driver to join them. It would seem very frustrating and AUTOSPORT asked that very question of the German on Thursday:
“I’m a little bit disappointed, yes.
“But on the other hand it is only my third year in F1 and other guys had to wait a bit longer than that for the big opportunity.
“Of course you are impatient and you want to be in a competitive car as quick as you can, but on the other hand it would be nice to be somewhere.
“With Ferrari it was close, but it didn’t happen for the reasons we know. McLaren, I don’t know, they seem to have no interest. I don’t know why.”
It’s hard to imagine another German with humility on the grid and while many believe that humility and luster has worn off of Sebastian Vettel, Hulkenberg seems to be the Un-Vettel that many would like to see in a top ride with a chance of beating the 4-time champ.
Stunning Ferrari chose Kimi Raikkonen, McLaren chose Kevin Magnussen and Lotus seems to be choosing Pastor Maldonado over what many feel is the real thing on the grid.
I can tell you from first-hand experience while watching Nico at the US Grand Prix, Hulkenberg is the REAL thing! His approach to driving and the way he rotates his car in the turns and the speed he carries is very…well…Vettel-like. Let’s hope we get to see that matchup someday soon.