Nico Hulkenberg believes that fourth place is still a realistic target for Force India in this year’s Formula 1 constructors’ championship.
Force India has enjoyed a mixed start to the season, with Hulkenberg’s seventh place finish in Australia being contrasted by a best finish of 15th two weeks later in Bahrain.
With Mercedes and Ferrari appearing to lead the way at the front of the pack once again this year, the fight to be best of the race is closely contested between Red Bull, Williams, Force India and – judging by its early pace – the new Haas team.
Speaking in Thursday’s FIA press conference, Hulkenberg said that he believes finishing fourth in the constructors’ championship is still a realistic target for Force India in 2016.
“I feel it’s still realistic,” Hulkenberg said.
“It’s tough and it’s a big challenge but you know our first two race also were compromised. In Melbourne we still got away with good points, but the red flag definitely cost us.
“And obviously Bahrain was a very poor day for us – having a lap one incident and then being offset on strategy and being in traffic, offset with tyre life compared to everybody else made it really difficult.
“Had that not happened for sure we were in a points scoring position and I think we could have challenged for sixth or seventh position again.
“There are good signs. It’s still early day in this season, so I think and I feel there’s still more to come from us.
The Chinese Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 1:30am ET on Sunday.