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Hulkenberg openly supports Sainz joining Sauber-Audi

Hulkenberg openly supports Sainz joining Sauber-Audi
© Reuters
Audi-Sauber is ramping up its efforts to lure Carlos Sainz to their F1 project.

Audi-Sauber is ramping up its efforts to lure Carlos Sainz to their F1 project.

As the team currently known as 'Kick' or 'Stake', fully owned by the German automaker, gears up to be Audi's official Formula 1 team starting in 2026, they are keen on adding talent to their roster.

Nico Hulkenberg, already committed to drive for the team from 2025, was joined by team spokesperson Alessandro Alunni Bravi in acknowledging Sainz's prowess at Imola. Sainz is "a top driver and an important objective," the latter declared.

"Let's just say that we are talking and Carlos also has options of the highest level," Bravi revealed to El Mundo Deportivo newspaper. "We don't want to be a second choice. We want to be 'the' choice."

When asked by the Spanish broadcaster DAZN whether he would appreciate having Sainz, aged 29, join him at Sauber-Audi for 2025 and the future, Hulkenberg was positive.

"I value Carlos a lot," he replied. "He is an incredible driver."

"We were already teammates at Renault in 2018 and I enjoyed sharing a team with him."

Hulkenberg noted that Sainz has options with other leading teams like Mercedes and Red Bull.

"As a driver," he commented, "what you want is to be able to choose your best option at a sporting level. Personally, I would love it if he came (to Sauber)."

Additionally, Hulkenberg expressed his current satisfaction in Formula 1 since his comeback with Haas, despite concerns about the sport considering a shift to a sprint format for every grand prix starting 2025.

"We have six grands prix with the sprint now, if I'm not mistaken," he mentioned, "and I think that's a good balance."

"We should protect it to preserve the true DNA of the sport. I think the calendar is already very well structured, with many breaks - for us, resting for a weekend is like a vacation."

"I consider myself an expert at relaxing," Hulkenberg quipped. "I enjoy both racing and free time."

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Carlos Sainz at the Italian GP on September 2, 2023
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