Nico Hulkenberg says a number of drivers in the Formula One paddock are showing an interest in his debut at Le Mans this weekend.
The Force India driver is driving a third Porsche entry at Le Mans, the first time a current F1 driver has taken part in the 24 hour race since Sebastien Bourdais in 2009. Having made his World Endurance Championship debut at the 6 Hours of Spa in April, Hulkenberg says a number of his colleagues in F1 have been asking about the difference racing in the two categories.
“A lot of comments, obviously of good luck when I left,” Hulkenberg said when talking about the interest from the F1 paddock. “A lot of the drivers are actually quite curious and interested what it feels like, what the car is like etc. So there is definitely awareness of F1 people and an interest as well.”
Asked by F1i which drivers have shown an interest, Hulkenberg replied: “Quite a few!”
Speaking about his experience at Le Mans so far, the German is not letting himself get too excited about the race yet.
“It’s special and unique. I obviously know and have worked in the F1 environment in the last few years, it’s different, for sure, and here things are more open. Obviously there are more fans and people around who hunt you down for photographs and autographs but that’s OK, you just have to fight your way through. Otherwise I think the magical feeling and the atmosphere will build when we get closer to closer to the race.”
And Hulkenberg says he is not concerned by the busy schedule as he is currently in the middle of races in Canada, Le Mans and Austria on consecutive weekends.
“It is quite demanding, but it’s a three week push, then after that I have a break. Then it’s Silverstone and afterwards July is a bit more quiet and we have the summer break in August. It’s just a busy time but not too busy. I still get my few days off next Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday; a bit of a breather and recharge to be fresh in Austria again.”
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