Hulkenberg doesn't see Red Bull coming again: 'Door to top teams closed'

19-07-2021 18:43 | Updated: 19-07-2021 19:05
Hulkenberg doesn't see Red Bull coming again: 'Door to top teams closed'

Despite being out of a seat since the end of 2019, Nico Hulkenberg still dreams of a return to Formula 1. Since leaving Renault ahead of the 2020 season, when he was replaced by Esteban Ocon, the German driver has had to make do with a position as test and reserve driver. Currently he fulfils that role at Mercedes and Aston Martin. Nevertheless, he hopes for a permanent seat in 2022.

Hülkenberg seemed close to a transfer to Red Bull last winter, but Helmut Marko chose Sergio Perez as second driver next to Max Verstappen. Hulkenburg has now admitted that the chance that one of the top teams will sign him for next season is now very small.

No interest from top teams

What does the 31-year-old driver from Emmerik say about his options?"You can count them on one hand. Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari," he jokes to Germany's Bild am Sonntag, before seriously continuing, "I'm under no illusions, the door to the top teams is closed to me."

Only at the teams at the back of the field like Williams, Haas F1 and to a lesser extent Alfa Romeo Racing, do major shifts seem to be taking place. George Russell might make the switch to Mercedes, Mick Schumacher is still not confirmed and Kimi Raikkonen may have to perform better if he is to be considered for a contract extension.

Hulkenberg keen to return

"I don't want to go into details. I am convinced that I still belong in Formula 1, not because I want to offer myself for something, but I think if you are good at something you should be rewarded for it," he said when asked if there were talks with Williams or Haas F1. "If it doesn't work out now, the Formula One chapter is over for me."

Video player

More videos

  • Small
  • Big