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Hulkenberg thanks Force India for lifeline

ESPN Staff
November 21, 2012 « Senna 'excited' to be home | Marussia set for battle for 10th »
Hulkenberg has enjoyed his return to F1 with Force India © Sutton Images

Nico Hulkenberg has thanked the Force India team for trusting in him and giving him his lifeline back into Formula One as the German prepares for his final outing with the team in Brazil.

Hulkenberg spent a year as Force India's test driver after being dropped by Williams at the end of 2010 before stepping up to drive a full season for the team this year. Sauber announced at the end of October that they had signed Hulkenberg as one of their two drivers for the 2013 season, with his team-mate still yet to be named.

"First of all I want to thank everyone for believing in me and giving me the chance to return to Formula One this year as a race driver," said Hulkenberg. "I've learned a lot during the last two seasons, even as a third driver, and the time has flown by very quickly. It's a great team of people; they're fun to work with and I think we can be proud of the results we achieved together.

"That's why it was not an easy decision to leave, but I'm happy to be leaving with good memories. The task now is to end the year in style with a great result."

Hulkenberg has scored 53 points for the team this season going into the final race, putting him seven points ahead of current team-mate Paul di Resta and only five behind his possible 2013 Sauber team-mate Kamui Kobayashi.

Force India team boss Vijay Mallya said he would confirm his drier line-up for the 2013 season after the Brazilian Grand Prix but Di Resta is expected to retain his seat.