Formula 1 Racing

Ocon regrets being “nice guy” after belatedly obeying order to let Gasly pass · RaceFans

Esteban Ocon, Alpine, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2024

Esteban Ocon said he was “too nice” in following Alpine’s orders to let his team mate past at the end of the race, though he initially refused to do so.

The Alpine drivers were separated by Daniel Ricciardo until he overtook Ocon with four laps to go as they approached the final corner. That brought Gasly onto Ocon’s tail, and early on the following lap Alpine called for a change of positions between their drivers.

Ocon initially refused to follow the order, telling his race engineer Josh Peckett to “forget it.”

Peckett told Ocon the order had been made to allow Gasly to attack Ricciardo. Ocon asked whether he would be allowed to re-pass Gasly if his team mate was unable to take the place. Peckett told him “that’s what I’m working on.”

A lap after receiving the instruction, Ocon told the team he would let Gasly by, and pulled over at the exit of turn seven. By this time Gasly was two seconds behind Ricciardo and only a lap and a half of the race remained. He was unable to pass the RB, and was not told to give the place back to his team mate.

Ocon, who started 18th following his penalty for colliding with Gasly in Monaco, said he was “not the happiest” about the race.

“Obviously we started last and got into the points with both cars, which is amazing for the team. But I did my part of the job, being a team player, being the nice guy. But too nice, I am.”

He said it had been futile to try to get Gasly ahead of Ricciardo. “We had to let Pierre go at the end, which I’ve done,” said Ocon. “I’ve always followed the instructions that I’ve been given.

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But for no reason, really because we were not going to catch Daniel. That was the reason for the call. And obviously, I’m losing a point there.

“Being too nice is not the right attitude to have in Formula 1 but I showed that I’m a team player, and that’s what matters.”

Alpine announced earlier this week Ocon will leave the team at the end of the year.

Ocon’s messages from the end of the Canadian Grand Prix

Peckett Esteban, we have to let Pierre through, please. Gap behind him two seconds to Hulkenberg.
Ocon What was the reason?
Peckett We need to try and attack Ricciardo.
Ocon Yeah, forget it!
Peckett Okay, that is a request. Got three laps to go.
Ocon Are you giving the place back after or not?
Peckett That’s what I’m working on, stand by.
Ocon Okay, I let him by.
Peckett Understood.

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