Hulkenberg positive after first laps in new car

Fri Feb 27, 2015 12:58pm EST
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By Alan Baldwin

BARCELONA (Reuters) - Nico Hulkenberg looked for the positives after finally getting his hands on Force India's new Formula One car with barely any time left to test it before next month's Australian season-opener.

The tall German propped up the timesheets with the slowest lap on Friday but at least there were 77 of them against his name.

"It's alright, it's a start, it's a baseline," he told reporters at the Circuit de Catalunya. "But I think we have a lot of work ahead of us.

"I can feel some areas where it's a bit better but some areas are quite similar.

"I think we have a good crew together and usually we learn quite quickly," added Hulkenberg. "In this case we have to learn quickly and then see where we can push ourselves in Melbourne."

The season starts on March 15, with testing wrapping up this Sunday before the cars and freight are flown to Australia at the end of the week.

Force India finished sixth overall last year, a season marked by calls from them and other financially-troubled teams for a bigger share of the revenues to help them survive, and have struggled to get their car ready in time.

They missed the first four-day test in Jerez and brought the 2014 car to the second four-day session in Barcelona. Friday was the first running of the new one.   Continued...

Force India Formula One driver Nico Hulkenberg of Germany drives through a corner during the German F1 Grand Prix at the Hockenheim racing circuit July 20, 2014.           REUTERS/Michael Dalder