Author Topic: Hulkenberg to miss Macau GP  (Read 2967 times)

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Hulkenberg to miss Macau GP
« on: October 19, 2008, 11:54:46 AM »

By Steven English    Friday, October 17th 2008, 12:57 GMT

Nico HulkenbergFormula 3 Euro Series champion Nico Hulkenberg will not race in this year's Macau Grand Prix.

The German wrapped up the European title earlier this month, but will not return to the end-of-season event this year because it takes place in the same week as a GP2 ground test at Paul Ricard, where he will be in action for ART Grand Prix.

Hulkenberg had a luckless time at Macau last season, but would have gone into this year's 55th running of the event as the favourite after dominating the Euro Series this year.

"Macau is an amazing event, a great place and I enjoyed it a lot last year, so it's a shame not to be going back this year," he told this week's Autosport magazine. "But I need to concentrate on GP2 now for next year."

Hulkenberg's absence, as well as the strength of the Macau rookies on this year's entry list, mean there is a good chance that the race could be won by a Macau debutant for the first time since Alexandre Premat's victory in 2004.

The leading newcomers this season include British F3 champion Jaime Alguersuari and runner-up Oliver Turvey - who are joined at Carlin Motorsport by Marcus Ericsson - Euro Series front runners Jules Bianchi, Mika Maki and Jon Lancaster, and Japanese F3 runner-up Kaisuke Kunimoto.

But Alguersuari played down the chances of a Macau rookie winning the event.

"It will be hard for all of us because it's a very difficult circuit and almost always the second-year drivers do best there," he told Autosport.

Expected contenders with experience of the Macau streets include Japanese F3 champion Carlo van Dam, British F3 front runner Brendon Hartley, and Euro Series front runners Edoardo Mortara, Renger van der Zande, Sam Bird and James Jakes, and Australian F3 champion James Winslow.