“Good, but not good enough,” is Renault F1 team boss Eric Boullier’s assessment, when asked about Nick Heidfeld’s performance to-date with the Enstone-based outfit.

Nick Heidfeld needs to lift his game, according to Renault boss Eric Boullier Despite picking up a podium in his second outing for the team at Malaysia, the German veteran has not enjoyed the strongest of starts to his full-time return to the sport. Although he lies 8 points ahead of team-mate Vitaly Petrov in the current championship standings, his cause has not been helped by some difficulties in qualifying that have left him with much more work to do on race day.

Heidfeld has typically struggled to match Petrov’s pace from the start of most Grand Prix weekends, and this is an area Boullier believes needs addressing.

“I need to sit down with him and understand his concerns and to have a fair understanding of the situation,” he told AUTOSPORT.

“It needs to be from practice one to be at least on Vitaly’s pace and it looks like there is always a delay, and qualifying if you are not ready car-wise, balance-wise and confidence-wise then you cannot deliver on one single lap.

“Sunday is okay. Sunday’s pace is good, it is very good, but obviously the higher we qualify on the grid, the better the chance we have to score more points.”

Of equal concern is why Renault delivered such an uncompetitive performance at the Monaco Grand Prix, the very race the team had touted as one where it would be most competitive. For the first time this season, neither car managed to get into the top-ten shootout in qualifying.

“If you are first and third on the grid, that is not a worry. But if you are 11th and 16th then that starts to be a worry,” Boullier added.

[Original image via LAT]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.