Esteban Ocon’s Pace Surprised Perez

Published 11/06/2017, 9:45 AM EST
Perez vs Ocon


Sergio Perez admitted that Force India team mate Esteban Ocon’s pace caught him off guard. The pair have been shadowing each other’s moves throughout the 2017 season. A close rivalry developed, which resulted in some troubles over the summer. Namely, when Perez and Ocon clashed with each other on several occasions.

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Esteban Ocon’s pace stunned Perez

An alarmed Force India subsequently changed the rules of engagement. They forbade the pair from racing each other. But the Silverstone-based outfit has kept both on board for 2018. Mexican Perez said that he was “surprised” by the French youngster’s “level of performance” in 2017. Perez said “I did not think he would have such results in his first year. Even with a difficult car, Esteban still manages to go fast. That’s one of his strengths and I have to learn from that.”

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What is the Reason behind the Rise of Esteban Ocon?

Checo cited qualifying improvement as a factor behind Esteban Ocon’s pace. But he was glad to have a teammate pushing him to his limits. The Mexican said that in today’s F1, your teammate is your only reference. The 27-year old said “The three teams in front of us are untouchable”. Perez, a veteran of 132 Grands Prix, currently enjoys a nine-point lead over his 21-year-old team mate in the drivers’ standings. Former McLaren man Jo Ramirez backs his countryman’s view, and says Ocon’s results could eventually land him a plum drive at Mercedes for 2019.

Their collision in Baku was the last straw for Force India

Ramirez said “If Sergio does not push his limits, Esteban will become the number 1. The internal competition is good for Sergio, but he absolutely must succeed because this business is unforgiving. Sometimes I wonder what Valtteri Bottas is doing at Mercedes, because he is clearly not at the same level as Hamilton. Especially when Esteban is also a Mercedes driver.”

Force India, feeling a little more confident, have opted to relax the restrictions on both drivers.

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Dhruv George

12001 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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