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Rediff.com  » Sports » Brazilian GP: Top-five finish for Hulkenburg in final race with Force India

Brazilian GP: Top-five finish for Hulkenburg in final race with Force India

November 26, 2012 09:53 IST

Nico Hulkenberg ended his partnership with Sahara Force India on a high as he secured 10 points for the side at the season-closing Brazilian Grand Prix with a fifth place finish, in Sao Paulo on Sunday.

History beckoned the young German when he was locked in an intesne race-lead battle with Mercedes-bound Lewis Hamilton but an overtaking manoeuvre in lap 49 brought him a costly drive through penalty, spoiling his podium chances.

Nico HulkenburgNevertheless, it was a fantastic season for Hulkenberg as he finished 11th in the drivers standings with 63 points, just three behind Sauber's Sergio Perez, and 17 more than team-mate Paul di Resta, who was 14th.

Hulkeberg matched his second best result of the season on Sunday -- he had finished fifth at the European Grand Prix also.

A career-best fourth place at the Belgian Grand Prix was the highlight of his stay at the Indian team.

Hulkenberg had joined Force India in 2011 as a test and reserve driver and was promoted to a race seat this season in place of Adrian Sutil.

He will join Sauber for the 2013 season and will be partnered by Mexican driver Esteban GutiƩrrez.

It was forgettable season-end race for Di Resta as he crashed out of the race in the penultimate lap after spinning his car on the last corner to go off track and hit the wall.

The Indian team finished seventh in the constructors' championship with 109 points, 17 less than Sauber.

The team had finished sixth last year having scored 69 points in 2011.

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