Williams driver Lance Stroll has said that he understands Esteban Ocon’s situation. The Frenchman could be staring at an impending exit from Force India. However, Stroll thinks that although it is “unfair”, he deserves to take the seat ahead of Ocon.
After qualifying a brilliant 3rd place, Ocon revealed that he does not have a seat at Force India next season. Instead, that seat has been “bought” by the Stroll family.
With Lance’s father, Lawrence, completing his Force India takeover, it is a matter of when Lance makes the switch.
Although he understands the harsh reality of losing a seat in Formula 1, Stroll believes that he deserves more credit. The Canadian firmly stated that his driving ability and not his money, should be taken into account.
“I’m not arguing that point, but my results and what I’ve done in the past should have been acknowledged a little bit more,” Stroll said.
“It’s very harsh. Sometimes a footballer has more ability, potentially, than another.
“It just happens to be that one gets thrown in a shi**y club, and another with less ability gets a great pay cheque at a better club.
“I’m not disagreeing that the system isn’t entirely fair all the time.
“But I deserve more than just mention of the money that’s behind me. And it’s not entirely my father.
“Aside from him, I bring in partnerships with JCB, Canada Life, Bombardier. So, I think there’s a separation between my father and I, to a certain extent.”
Stroll is well aware that the imminent move will not sit well with others and does understand how the situation looks from Ocon’s perspective.
“Potentially, my father buying this team can make it a much better team, much more competitive. It’s not, in my eyes, a big negative,” he added.
“From Esteban’s point of view, it’s triggered towards me, because my father’s involved in Force India. Drivers from certain backgrounds will have their view on how things should be. Drivers with financial backing will think otherwise.
“If he takes me to Force India, that’s his choice, and I understand that for Esteban, that might not be great or fair.
“But I think that I deserve to be recognised more for the results I’ve achieved. I wanted to get that off my chest.”