Hülkenberg Awaits Audi Partner

Audi F1: No Rush for Hülkenberg’s Teammate


Audi F1 stresses there’s no rush to choose Nico Hülkenberg’s future teammate, aiming for the best drivers available for their 2026 debut.

The transfer market continues to stir the Formula 1 scene in Monaco, with many seats still up for grabs for the 2025 season and beyond. This is particularly true for the Stake F1 team, soon to be Audi F1 from 2026, which still has a seat to fill despite Nico Hülkenberg already signing.

Carlos Sainz seems to be the team’s top choice, though the Spaniard is waiting for the situation to clarify among the top teams before making his decision. He is also reportedly considering Williams Mercedes’ offer with great interest.

One thing is certain, according to the team principal of Hinwil, Alessandro Alumni Bravi: the goal is to secure the most competitive driver pairing possible in light of the new regulations.

“We want to have the best pair of drivers available on the market. This doesn’t depend solely on our team. It depends, of course, on availability and many factors. We’ve noticed the market is quite fluid and every day, we see new names and combinations in the press. So, the objective is to have the best drivers available for a long-term project like the Audi F1 team.”

However, according to the Italian, no deadline has been set for deciding the identity of the future driver.

“There is no deadline. We have a goal that, I think, should allow us to find the best possible option.”

Improvements Not Yet “Sufficient” to Aim Higher

On the track, Stake F1 is still chasing its first point in 2024 and has recently faced some challenging Grands Prix, particularly in qualifying. Alumni Bravi is well aware of this and discusses what his team needs to work on to improve the situation as quickly as possible.

“It’s simply a lack of performance. You know, we start the weekend in FP1 on an equal footing. We were not able to recover in time for the qualifying session in Imola. We saw that the race pace was much better, but of course, we need to regain performance and accelerate improvements. We introduced a new floor last weekend that brought some improvements, but not enough to close the gap, especially with Racing Bulls and also with Haas F1.”

“Here, we have a new concept, a new rear wing that should help us find additional performance, but of course the field is very tight. We need to push more on the performance side, so there is no other reason than the lack of performance.”

Monaco might offer opportunities this weekend, but the Italian leader does not believe the C44 will be more at ease than other F1 cars on this street circuit.

“I don’t think there’s a car that suits one track or another. If you have a good base, you can be competitive on all circuits. In our case, I think it will be very important to put everything together; you know, the drivers are also a factor, especially in qualifying. We need to work well as a team, maximize track time, and assess if our new rear wing delivers the expected performance, and I think weather conditions will also be a factor.”

“There are many different elements that can play a role, but if we have a good base setup, the drivers are comfortable, and the car is easy to drive, it helps. For us, the goal is not to change the circuit but to improve the car’s performance. That’s our main objective.”

Another urgent area for improvement within the team was the pit stops. Alumni Bravi is pleased with what he saw at Imola in this regard, with the modifications to the wheel nuts.

“I think the pit stops in Imola were good; we didn’t lose any positions during the pit stops compared to other drivers stopping at the same time. So, I think we can put these problems behind us and now move forward and focus on other matters.”

Hülkenberg Awaits Audi Partner. Hülkenberg Awaits Audi Partner

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