Opinion: If Hulkenberg Joins Haas It Could Be Great For F1 – WTF1

Opinion: If Hulkenberg Joins Haas It Could Be Great For F1

Whether you like it or not, this is the age of Drive to Survive. Controversial as DTS may be, there’s no denying it’s injected an element of drama, grown the F1 fanbase, and played a role in turning it into the modern phenomenon we know and love. But what on Earth does this have to do with Nico Hulkenberg? Well, allow me to paint the picture.

Let’s be real here. Like almost everything that makes money by appearing on TV, F1 is just another form of entertainment. There are numerous layers that make F1 interesting, like the engineering and the speed, but to many, it’s the human story that keeps them on the edge of their seats.

Since DTS graced our Netflix subscriptions with its melodrama and out-of-order radio messages, we’ve been treated to a whole new window into the world of F1. It is both fascinating and addictive in equal measure. This is largely down to the fact that these drivers, who usually present as borderline mythical creatures, are able to come across as the genuine people they are.

In Hulkenberg’s case, DTS helped to popularise the statistic he has become infamous and meme-worthy for. In case you didn’t know, he’s the driver to have completed the most races without ever stepping onto the podium.

This unfortunate fact has followed him around like a cat chasing a piece of string. Indeed, as Cyril Abiteboul (the former Renault F1 Team Principal) hinted following Hulk’s crash out of a potential podium at the 2019 German Grand Prix, it may even have sent him spinning out of the sport altogether.

“The fact that the podium once again became unavailable to him, I started to think that maybe there is a curse or something between him and a top-three finish.”

If you’ve seen the episode of DTS where Abiteboul says this (season two, episode eight), you’ll know that he then confirms Hulkenberg will be dropped and replaced by Esteban Ocon. Yikes.

By the end of the 2022 F1 season, it’ll be three full seasons since Nico had a full-time race seat. Now, if Guenther and co decide to hire him, this gives Nico that crucial final chance to break his duck and grab that elusive podium. And don’t tell me you wouldn’t root for him every step of the way.

Plus, there’s a kicker. Haas has never scored a podium either. Can you imagine the sheer wholesomeness of that coming together? In my head, I have wonderful images of Guenther and Nico bear hugging, spraying each other with Champagne, and most importantly, Nico sharing an image of his adorable dog, Zeus, sitting inside his new trophy.

Ok, perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself. I’m no Hulk stan – I promise. In many ways, he doesn’t deserve to come back. But in this new era of F1, an era that’s thriving by playing up to that human element, this story is too good for us to miss out on, and I’d like to give it every chance.

Would you like to see Hulk back in F1?

7 thoughts on “Opinion: If Hulkenberg Joins Haas It Could Be Great For F1

  • Andrew Gish-Johnson says:

    Curse or finally getting a podium fits the team. As a Haas fan, I’d be in.

    (I’m also starting to become a fan of Williams because I appear to really like the under-est of the underdogs.)

  • Cameron Black says:

    I honestly think this is the wrong decision. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Nico in f1 and think he could be a great addition. The problem for me is that despite being a consistent driver, he has never really had one magical race where he has been truly phenomenal. The other issue is his age. People might not realize but he is actually around the same age as hamilton, meaning that in 2-3 years time they will need to go shopping again. Mick, pacewise, has actually been quite good, similar to zhou at Alfa Romeo. It just happens that when the car is quick he is not on the ball, or crashes, as opposed to zhou’s reliability woes when Alfa Romeo were quick. The other options for me would be ricciardo, but that seems unrealistic, or to pinch an f2 talent, potentially jack doohan or Theo pourchaire, both of whom I’m surprised have been so sparsely linked. Pourchaire in particular has been very impressive this season for someone so young, and maybe putting him in an f1 car early could reap max verstappen esc. rewards for Haas. Personally I think they should stick with Mick, but if they really wanted him out, I would go for a long term solution rather than a returning driver who will cost the team much more in terms of salary, and only be around for a couple more years. In that regard, if mick had to go, I would put pourchaire in the Haas for next season.

  • ฬ๏ยtєг says:

    I think Nico Hülkenberg is great, but his time has gone. I think HAAS should stick with Mick, but maybe change their approach with him. HAAS does not have the best track record of knowing how to build up confidence in their younger drivers, so maybe some changes in the team surrounding Mick is needed as he isn’t doing all that bad this year apart from the first couple of races. Maybe Vettel could play a role in supporting Mick now that he is no longer going to be a driver himself.

    I still think Mick is a good option for a move to Audi-Sauber eventually with Vettel as senior advisor in the team. Whether that is from 2026 or even before… we’ll see.

  • Lars Jeppesen says:

    Mick is honestly great, stop this bs. The car sucks, we all know it.

    Kmag is one of the best but he will never get a chance in a top car due to the small country he is from .

    Stick with Mick

  • What are you talking about ? Having decisions like that is exactly the epidemy of guys like De Vries not being in F1 or being too late. Instead we have Latifis and Hulkenbergs and whateverbergs on and on and on. They never produce something memorable, yet they are a good deal perhaps. Well, perhaps Haas doesn’t belong in F1 and sadly neither does Alpa Tauri, Alpha Romeo and yes, one of my favs all time (by history)…Williams. While the bulls, the mercs, the ferraris, the alpines, the astons and the mclarens are willing to go over the cap, exploit grey areas and play the dirty chess game, those other teams probably have no place on the grid. They’re more likely 50 millions under the budget and prey for cheap but experimented relics or untalented brats with rich dads while Mick who is not a top driver, but could be and deserves a last shot after having a ford fiesta in the first year and a modest second year, is having his butt kicked over the first accident and then losing trust in his capabilities. How can a driver race on the edge of performance if he has a bully like Guenther in his mind all the time ?
    Anyway, good luck running the Hulk. I am surprised that such a useless team doesn’t get Latifi.

  • Personally i dont think this is a good idea. Yes Nico is an icon with the whole DR “NIICOO HUUULKENBBBERRG”. But he has been in F1 for a very long time. My main issue would have to be the fact he is super unlucky, He has had so many chances of having a podium. For example Silverstone 2020 with the racing point while he was a replacement driver. He just has had his chance in F1 and as great it would be for him to come back. It is techniocally still Micks first season with a proper F1 car that can go for at least p10

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