Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg formed an all-new driver line-up in 2014, replacing Adrian Sutil and Paul di Resta, and both have put in some highly impressive displays. After eight rounds, the team sits fourth in the constructors’ championship, and is just eleven points behind Ferrari.
For Mallya, both Hulkenberg and Perez have performed admirably, and he was particularly pleased with the latter’s performance in Austria following his last-lap crash at the Canadian Grand Prix.
“It was a very good boost, especially for Checo, after what happened in Montreal,” he said. “He got the fastest lap too, which I think says a lot. It was important to get both cars in the points to hold onto our fourth place in the championship, although I think we could have done a bit better with Nico.
“I have a great respect for Checo and his talent. He’s a gutsy guy, he loves his racing, and irrespective of who is in front or behind he keeps his cool and displays a lot of maturity, which is great.
“The way he passed Magnussen in Austria was impressive. He’s a talented young lad and I’m happy to have him in the team. Nico’s class is well recognised in the paddock and he’s scored points in every race this year. I expect him to shine in the second half of the season too.”
Hulkenberg may still be chasing his first podium finish in F1, but his stock in the paddock is certainly high. He was close to signing a contract with Ferrari last year, but the Italian marque ultimately brought Kimi Raikkonen back to Maranello.
Perez has certainly bounced back well in 2014 after a difficult one year stint with McLaren last season. The Mexican driver scored a superb podium finish in Bahrain, and he will be hoping to return to the rostrum before the end of the season.
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic.