F1 News and Rumors: Capito Confirms Hulkenberg is Part of Williams’ F1 ‘List’ for 2022

Published 07/19/2021, 10:51 AM EDT
SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE – SEPTEMBER 19: Nico Hulkenberg of Germany and Renault Sport F1 walks in the Paddock during previews ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Singapore at Marina Bay Street Circuit on September 19, 2019 in Singapore. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)


The F1 2022 drivers market is one for the books, and the talk of the future of the teams has already taken the community by storm. There’s been talk of interchanging drivers, bidding adieu to some, bringing in rookies, and even bringing back the popular ones. Recently, the name Nico Hulkenberg has found its way into the buzz.

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As of now, teams are waiting for Mercedes to finalize their second seat. The extension or termination of Valtteri Bottas’ contract will unfurl new possibilities for other teams, including Williams. Should George Russell be cherry-picked by the Silver Arrows, Williams would have their seat open to new opportunities.

Team principal Jost Capito revealed he is in no hurry to fix a name for the seat. Nonetheless, they have an eye out for potential candidates. Among these is Nico Hulkenberg, a driver who began his career in F1 with the team.

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Formula One F1 – Eifel Grand Prix – Nurburgring, Nurburg, Germany – Racing Point’s Nico Hulkenberg in action during qualifying. Pool via REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

“At the moment, we are not ruling out any driver who would be available for the next year; and Nico is available for next year.”

However, Capito doesn’t give away much on his prospects saying, “But we have a fairly long waiting list.”

The current third driver for Aston Martin, Nico donned a pink race suit last year to sub for Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll when they tested positive for coronavirus.

Will Nico Hulkenberg return to F1?

Back in 2019, Renault shut the doors on the German as the team welcomed Esteban Ocon. He had raced for three years with the team and was impressive on track; however, he had a track record of 176 races without ever stepping on the podium. Ex-team boss Cyril Abiteboul, in a move to improve the team, brought in Ocon as a replacement.

Three years ago, in an interview with Formula 1, Nico said, “I’m not done with racing, this is not the end of my career. If there’s a return or not in ’21 or ’22 or God knows when.

“But for me, it doesn’t feel like ‘The End’.” 

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It wasn’t necessarily the end for the driver as he was back on the F1 track for an accomplished race with Racing Point. Although he couldn’t start at the British GP while subbing Perez, his race in place of Stroll showed his true colors. It was also special to see Nico back on track at the 70th Anniversary GP, where he qualified third and finished seventh.

Now Aston Martin’s third driver, perhaps it’s time to see Hulkenberg back on the grid; maybe Nico was right. There’s always hope for Driver #27 to be back on the track, and hopefully, with the advancements made in the sport paired with a good car like Williams, he may have a fighting chance at finally getting that podium.

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Shreya Sanjeev

134 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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