Nick Heidfeld was signed by Lotus Renault GP as an experienced stand in to main driver Robert Kubica, who was seriously injured in a rally accident before the season started. He’s supposed to lead the line, but the past few races have been disappointing for Quick Nick, who is now getting a hurry up from his boss.

The German started the season outside of the points, but bounced back strongly in Sepang with a podium finish. However, the following four races saw him pick up less points than the 15 he got in Malaysia. He has also struggled to match the pace of teammate Vitaly Petrov in qualifying, damaging his chances of better results on Sunday. His head-to-head qualifying score against Petrov is 1-5.

When asked by Autosport what Heidfeld needed to do, team boss Eric Boullier said: “I don’t know. I need to sit down with him and understand his concerns and to have a fair understanding of the situation. 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.”

On Heidfeld’s season so far, he said: “Let’s say good, but not good enough. 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.”

Looks like Quick Nick will have to live up to his nickname quickly, especially on Saturdays. The next race is the Canadian GP from 10-12 June in Montreal.