Nico Hulkenberg will leave Sauber and return to Force India for the 2014 season, it was confirmed on Tuesday.
The 26-year-old German, who tested for the Silverstone-based squad in 2011 and scored 63 points when he raced for them in 2012, has ended months of speculation about his future by agreeing a multi-year deal.
“I am happy to come back to Sahara Force India,” said Hulkenberg, who scored 51 points and finished tenth in the drivers’ standings for Sauber this season.
“The team is aiming high for next year and I believe that the experience I have gained over the years will help us achieve those goals. I genuinely believe we can have a competitive package in 2014.
“I’ve heard a lot of positive things about the Mercedes engine as well, so I think there is a lot to be excited about for next year. I know this team and I can see their determination; it’s a great bunch of people and we all share the same hunger for success.”
Vijay Mallya, Force India’s team principal and managing director, said Hulkenberg’s decision to re-join the team will provide a boost:
“I’m delighted to see Nico back with Sahara Force India,” he said. “When he drove for us in 2012, it became clear Nico was an exceptional talent and he has continued to impress everyone in the paddock with his strong performances this season.
“Having Nico in our line-up is a real statement of intent and a huge boost for everyone associated with the team. We have high hopes and expectations for 2014 and by signing Nico we have put ourselves in the best position to achieve those objectives and enjoy what could be our most competitive season yet.”
Force India have yet to confirm who will partner Hulkenberg in 2014, saying they will make an announcement in due course.