After losing his last full-time F1 race with Renault at the end of the 2019 season, Hulkenberg competed in three events for the Aston team which was then known as Racing Point in the last campaign on occasion. where its regular pilots were unable to do so. stroke after contracting COVID-19.
Hulkenberg entered both races at Silverstone in place of Sergio Perez after testing positive for COVID on the eve of the British GP weekend, although Hulkenberg did not start the race after a bolt in the his car’s clutch sheared before the start. He would finish seventh on a sensational third on the grid, in the 70th Anniversary GP that would follow.
He then replaced Lance Stroll in the Eifel GP after the Canadian felt bad during testing – he was also only diagnosed with COVID after leaving the event at the Nürburgring – and Hulkenberg finished eighth after only taking part in qualifying and the race.
“First of all, it’s great to sign this deal with a lot of notice – last year I didn’t have that much time to prepare myself before hopping in the car,” said Hulkenberg, who has ran for the team in his Force. India disguises itself in 2012 and between 2014-2016.
“I am very happy to be working with this team again – with whom I have driven several times during my career.
“Obviously, I hope that Sebastian [Vettel, who has replaced Perez for 2021 at the rebranded Aston squad] and Lance are enjoying uninterrupted seasons this year, but the team know they can count on me to step in and do a great job, and I’m fully up to the challenge.
“It will also be interesting to contribute to the development of the team throughout the season, and I am really looking forward to having some good times on my round.”
Otmar Szafnauer, Team Director and CEO of Aston Martin, added: “We are delighted to be able to welcome Nico back to the team in an official capacity, as a reserve and development driver for [the] The Aston Martin Formula 1 team.
“In these difficult times, the requirement of a competent and experienced reserve pilot is particularly important.
“Nico proved last year that he can jump in the car and perform superbly at all times; now, with additional possibilities for preparation and integration, we know we can count on Nico to do a great job.