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Nico Hulkenberg to leave Haas at the end of the season, and drive for Kick Sauber in 2025

Written by Ria Ann Sam, Edited by Vyas Ponnuri 

Nico Hulkenberg has been announced to drive for Kick Sauber from 2025, on a multi-year deal, taking him into the era of Audi’s takeover of the Hinwil-based team. A veteran of 208 Grands-Prix, Hulkenberg will depart Haas after two seasons at the American outfit. 

Hulkenberg joined Haas back in 2023, replacing Mick Schumacher, and will be leaving the team at the end of the season. The German racer scored nine points for them last season, and has scored four so far this season.

Hulkenberg has also just been announced on a multi-year deal with Kick Sauber from the 2025 season, with an eye on driving for Audi from 2026.

Hulkenberg had taken a three-year break before joining Haas, acting as a super sub on more than one occasion for Racing Point and Aston Martin during this time. 

He outscored teammate Kevin Magnussen in 2023, putting in excellent qualifying performances to make Q3 on more than one occasion, and nearly landed his first first podium in Australia before the chaos of red flags took over.

This year, with the aid of some fierce, elbows-out defending from teammate Magnussen, Hulkenberg managed to squeeze into the top 10 in Jeddah. Despite not scoring many points, he has proved himself by driving well and defending against others.

Now, Hulkenberg’s departure from the team opens up a seat for another driver, with many claiming Oliver Bearman will take the seat, after his stellar performance for Ferrari in Saudi Arabia earlier this year.

Another option is Carlos Sainz who does not have a seat, though he is linked to several other teams. But Hulkenberg joining Sauber also means that one or two of the drivers from there will be leaving the team.

Hulkenberg was pleased to return to familiar territory:

“I’m returning to the team I worked with back in 2013 and have fond memories of the strong team spirit in Switzerland.

“The prospect of competing for Audi is something very special. When a German manufacturer enters Formula 1 with such determination, it is a unique opportunity. To represent the factory team of such a car brand with a power unit made in Germany is a great honour for me.”

Haas team principal Ayao Komatsu spoke highly of the German veteran, speaking of his wealth of experience and feedback to the team in particular:

 “I’d like to extend my thanks to Nico for his contributions to the team in the time that he’s been here with us – he’s been a great team player and someone we very much enjoy working with.

“His experience and feedback have proved invaluable to us in terms of improving our overall performance – a fact that’s clearly evident in both his qualifying and race performances in the VF-24 this season.

“There’s lots more racing to go this year so we look forward to continuing to benefit from his inputs throughout the remainder of the 2024 season.”

Hulkenberg's move has just kicked off silly season — quite literally. Just how silly is it going to be? Only time will give us the answer.


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