via Getty

Not everyone gets the opportunity to rub shoulders and work in close proximity with a seven-time world champion in Formula 1. However, despite being down and out, Esteban Ocon got lucky as he accepted the reserve driver role at Mercedes for the 2019 season. During that season, he not only got his hands on a world championship-winning car, but he also saw Lewis Hamilton lift his 5th world title and watch him operate closely. Not many would get such an incredible opportunity, but Ocon did. However, did he learn something from the most successful driver in the sport’s history? “Yes, definitely.”

This was Ocon’s reply when he was asked if there was something Ocon picked up from Hamilton on the High-Performance podcast’s latest episode. It would’ve been a huge missed opportunity if he didn’t during his time at Mercedes. Luckily, the Frenchman picked up a simple habit that changed his life and he still follows to this day.

“I remember Lewis coming from like different marketing events and all this in the race weekend and Lewis is a very busy man, you know apart from racing, – he’s got a very busy life in general. Seeing how he switch his focus from one thing to another, that kind of amazed me that he was straight away on point, back with his engineer after something completely different. He didn’t take like 10 minutes to re-focus and re-work with his engineers because you don’t have time to do that. He always had his paperboard with notes and he was always having notes not to forget things from one year to another or from one session to another and this is what I do as well now,” he revealed.


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Read More: Esteban Ocon Already Having Contract “Chats” Amid Rumored Move to Mercedes

It’s incredible how the smallest habits make such a huge difference in your day-to-day life, and this is exactly what Ocon is doing after his encounter with Hamilton. Although it seems every encounter between the two is worthy of a conversation. Let us prove it to you with an example.

Lewis Hamilton and Esteban Ocon reveal the exhilarating fun the two had during the 2022 Japanese GP

The 2022 Japanese GP saw Hamilton and Ocon lock horns on the track. The Brit started one place behind the Frenchman in P6 and even finished the race a place behind Ocon in P5. However, knowing Hamilton, one can assume the efforts he would’ve put to gain a position. Also, going by Ocon’s driving style, one can only imagine the risky defense he would’ve mounted.


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That is exactly what happened during the race as the two fought tooth and nail for a place till the very end. However, the on-track battle made the 2022 Japanese GP a memorable one for both.


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The seven-time world champion admitted, “I had a lot of fun. He did a great job staying on track and staying ahead, obviously, he was very, very quick on the straights. I was trying everything, but I think we had the most fun. I don’t know how other people had it.”

The Alpine driver also shared, “From there on, the fighting with Lewis, I enjoyed it a lot – it was a lot of fun. It was a bit of a karting battle, trying different lines; not one corner [was] I not watching my mirrors!”


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via Reuters

We love to witness instances of mutual respect between two drivers. Now we will want to see if these on-track battles continue but in different teams with Ocon replacing Hamilton at Mercedes, even if some see his teammate as more worthy of the seat.

Written by

Mahim Suhalka


One take at a time

Mahim is a senior Formula 1 writer at EssentiallySports. With a Diploma in Sports Management, he ventured into sports journalism for his sheer passion for F1. Mahim has written over 2000 articles during his tenure at ES, and his expertise is in perspective pieces and core sports coverage.
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Edited by

Ariva Debnath