Nico Hulkenberg says Renault needs to ask itself some serious questions after a disappointing first part to the 2019 season.
Managing director Cyril Abiteboul set the team the target of consolidating the fourth place it secured in the constructors’ championship last season and challenging for podiums where possible, but so far Renault has struggled. Heading into the summer break, Renault sits sixth in the constructors’ standings — 43 points adrift of McLaren in fourth — and Hulkenberg says the team needs to take a hard look at where things are going wrong.
“It’s a tough one,” Hulkenberg said. “It’s obviously quite below our expectations and the targets. I think we need to ask ourselves some serious questions and review a couple of things internally. There’s been far more lows than highs, unfortunately, and not really satisfying.
“(Questions such as) just how we go about things and where we’ve come the last 18 months with the car, what we’ve been doing. And the effect it has had — which is not that much of an effect — so updates will bring some yield and bring us forward.”
The Hungarian Grand Prix was another disappointing race for Renault as it failed to score a point for the second weekend in a row, and Hulkenberg says there were a number of issues hampering him throughout Sunday.
“It was not enjoyable. Not great. I had a power unit issue very early in the race — we lost the seamless shift a bit and lost quite a bit of lap time from power, from speed, that made it hard to stay in the race.
“Also the car was quite difficult to drive again — the balance didn’t really feel together at all. It was fighting the front axle, the rear axle, didn’t have the pace… With these things we can’t expect too much.”