Hulkenberg doubtful Renault can score points consistently in 2017.


Nico Hulkenberg believes scoring points this year will be a tall order for Renault following his assessment of the team's potential in pre-season testing.

While the French manufacturer has undoubtedly made gains over its 2016 performance level, increasing its resources and introducing a new power unit, consistent top 10 finishes will be difficult, says Renault's new recruit.

"I think Renault is better placed than last year," the former Force India driver said.

"The team moved closer to the midfield.  Points will be difficult as I think four teams are clearly in front. Then there's not much left. It's going to be difficult."

Week 2 in Barcelona saw a repeat of a weakness identified last week with Renault's ERS system, with failures for the works team but also for customers, Toro Rosso and red Bull.

"We did have a few questions marks this week," Hulkenberg said on Friday

"Today we managed to clear a few things. We now have a better understanding and a better car performance. It was productive day.

"We still have potential to go faster. And we still have plenty of work to do on the car. But the year is long. So I hope we can improve.

"I don't think we matched our expectations. During winter testing we discovered a few things that are not as we would like them to be.

"So this is how it is. Not we have to work hard to improve and get into the right direction. We would have liked to do a bit more set-up tests which we couldn't do as we were lacking time due to reliability issues.

"So we couldn't do everything we would have liked."

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