Force India's Nico Hulkenburg signals intent for 2013
The 25-year-old was widely praised for almost upstaging everyone in a tumultuous race won by Britain's Jenson Button of McLaren and in which Germany's Sebastian Vettel became the youngest triple champion in Formula One history.
Hulkenburg was in his final race for the unfancied Force India team and managed not only to finish fifth but also to lead the race, fight to take the lead again and survive a crash with Briton Lewis Hamilton's McLaren.
The collision appeared to have cost the Englishman a convincing victory when he slid into him on the wet circuit at the first turn.
But Hulkenberg still left the Interlagos circuit feeling proud of his efforts and ready to take on a new challenge next year with the Swiss Sauber team.
"I'm not too disappointed," he said. "Fifth place is still a good result. I think I've learned a lot in this race. My first kilometres leading a race and fighting with the top guys, so it was pretty eventful and a hell of a race.
"I'm proud of what we've done and my drive. It's not perfect but I'm still happy."
On the collision with Hamilton, he said it was a simple racing accident.
"It was quite unfortunately, obviously," he added. "We were challenging and we had Timo (Glock) and Heikki (Kovalainen) into turn one as well.
"I think Lewis ran
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