Nico Hulkenberg says the drag strip run-off which he crashed on during the German Grand Prix was not up to F1 standard.Lewis Hamilton, Charles Leclerc, Kimi Raikkonen and Carlos Sainz Jnr, had spun or crashed at the same corner.
“It doesn’t help,” he said. “It doesn’t recover anything, it doesn’t soothe the pain. It just shows that something was wrong in that corner, with the run-off area.
“But unfortunately all the others – apart from Charles, he was on slicks so that’s different again – kind of went off differently. Probably bigger mistakes but they spun and they had a chance to recover.
“The way I went off and the angle I went off I had no chance of recovery. That’s very frustrating and very painful because it’s something that in that time I couldn’t correct any more.”
Hulkenberg said he’d never experienced a run-off with as little grip as the drag strip section on the exit of turn 15. He described it as “something that’s not in line with our normal standards” in Formula 1.
“In a way, also, a bit on safety because when you can’t control a car it’s never safe,” he added. “We saw Lewis wasn’t far off hitting Charles’s car. So not great there.”
FIA race director Michael Masi said the drag strip “looked fine” following his post-race inspection of the circuit. However Hulkenberg spoke to Masi on Thursday morning and believes it will be changed if Hockenheim holds a round in the 2020 F1 calendar.
“Maybe his opinion’s different now,” said Hulkenberg. “I mean it was clear if you look at the TV footage, what other proof do you need? Just look at the images. We were just passengers there. You can’t do nothing.”
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