Haas pair of Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen score well in F1 Austrian GP, as the German expands on fight with Red Bull pair.

It ended up being a jolly good F1 Austrian GP for the Has pair of Hulkenberg and Magnussen after they ended up sixth and eighth to retake seventh in the constructors’ championship from Alpine, to create a healthy bridge between the two teams.

The two Haas drivers had a run-in early on after the first round of pit stops, where Magnussen was pitted before Hulkenberg. The Dane even swear on the radio but post that, it was all sound with a healthy gap between the two drivers.

“We’re both not the hardcore fans,” said Hulkenberg when asked about the football match between Germany and Denmark and if all is well. “That’s why it was funny more than anything, I had a good jolly there and in the race also. They stopped him obviously early, because he was under pressure or was getting undercut from, I guess, an RB.

“But undercut is super powerful here, so obviously, I wasn’t so impressed with that. There was a lack of instruction then afterwards. Because it was still only 10 laps into the race, a very long two stints ahead of us. But that’s just in the heat of the moment. We’re going to talk about it now, and it’s going to be fine.

“The call was pretty much just to look after the tyres, to manage tyres and cars, because we had track position already, we just needed to defend and maintain,” summed up Hulkenberg, as Magnussen echoed the sentiments that his teammate shared.

“I mean, it was just the heat of the moment,” he said. “I attacked him as he came out of the pits. Then he attacked me back. And I thought Okay, let’s settle down here.” With the points in the kitty, both the Haas drivers aren’t sure how they were able to do so well.

They are happy with the points certainly as it helps them to solidify their position. “Absolutely, myself P8 and Nico P6 – 12 points for the team, that’s a pretty good day,” said Magnussen. “Put us back in the run for P7 in the championship and couldn’t be more happy. It is very important. They’re [Alpine] going to be scoring points from now on, it seems and we have to keep the heat on.

“Certainly, it’s our best result this year. And yeah, we just looked strong. Nico turned his weekend around and been super strong ever since qualifying. So yeah, great weekend. I don’t think it’s like a breakthrough. I think it’s just good weekend. So let’s see what we can take from here. We’re going to some difficult tracks for us now.

“So we’re not kidding ourselves. We have a lot of work to do. But this was good bunch of points,” summed up Magnussen, as Hulkenberg expanded on the cheeky move he did on Red Bull’s Sergio Perez to retain sixth. The Mexican had sidepod damage and was running slower than he would have liked, which allowed the German to pounce on him.

Hulkenberg, in fact, gave up his place early in the lap to take it back with the help of DRS as they fought until the chequered flag. “Eight points and 12 in total, very-very good obviously, very happy,” he started. “Didn’t expect it. Of course, there was the help of two top cars being out, but you’ve got to be there to to pick up the pieces when it happens and we were there with both cars.

“It was a very intense race, especially at the end with Checo. I didn’t expect to be able to keep him behind for so long, but I tried a couple of laps and said to myself ‘let’s see what happens, maybe I can fuck with his tyres a little bit’. And then that’s actually what happened. And I managed to, with our good straightline speed, to keep my nose ahead.

“And yeah, I started defending also and in the end, it was just super tight. It was just survival, really trying to stay in front. A few sketchy moments, but good racing and hard and fair racing. I don’t know [if we beat Red Bull fair and square]. You tell me. I’m just pushing. I’m just doing my job, driving the car as hard as I can.

“You saw already in the sprint with Kevin that from all the midfield or the five teams, the second five teams, that we were very competitive here this weekend. And I just tried to use that again. It’s just important to to have a good quali to start in front, to get that clean air, to have track position.

“It just allows you to have flexibility to play with the strategy a bit and to look after the tyres,” summed up Hulkenberg, who also talked about being stuck behind the other Red Bull of Max Verstappen after the German’s pit stop. He was in a dilemma whether to pass him or not but in the end, he stayed behind the Dutchman.

“Yes and no, I mean, I stayed with him probably 10 laps, maybe even a bit more,” recalled Hulkenberg. “I stuck with his DRS, which obviously, you get towed around, which is free lap time, but in some of the corners I was obviously losing some downforce. Not sure. Maybe I could have gone a little bit faster without him, but I don’t think it compromised our race or hurt it.

“I thought about it while I was still ahead of him. But then I would have had to push so much and invest too much tyre, which would have come at a cost at the end. Obviously I had blue flags, so I have to let him by and I thought he would kind of disappear.

“But obviously he was quite late in his stint. So I had just new tyres and he was on old tyres, so quite a big tyre delta. But still I was managing my tyres a lot and conserving and everything,” summed up Hulkenberg.

Here’s how F1 Austrian GP panned out

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