Monaco could cost Ocon his entire F1 career

Wed, 29 May 2024, 11:56

May 29 (GMM) Esteban Ocon’s Monaco GP may have compromised his entire Formula 1 career, according to two former grand prix drivers.

Rumours are still swirling that Alpine team boss Bruno Famin, so enraged by Ocon’s team orders breach and crash with teammate Pierre Gasly on lap 1, may decide to bench the 27-year-old Frenchman at the upcoming Canadian GP.

Haas boss Ayao Komatsu admitted at Monaco that he is in talks with Ocon about a team switch for 2025.

But according to Martin Brundle, the long-serving British race commentator, Sunday in Monaco could have been the final nail in the coffin of Ocon’s attractiveness to “any team”.

“He has been heavily criticised before by Sergio Perez and Fernando Alonso for his intra-team aggression and contact, and now Gasly too,” he told Sky UK.

“It will cost Esteban heavily as no front running team would entertain that kind of mentality, or even perhaps any team. A driver represents hundreds of hard working and professional people, and hundreds of millions of pounds of investment and sponsorship when driving for an F1 team.

“You simply can’t keep attacking your one team-mate with abandon,” former driver Brundle added.

Another former F1 driver, Giedo van der Garde, agrees that Ocon’s personality effectively rules him out of contention for the 2025 Mercedes seat – even though he is managed by team boss Toto Wolff.

“He has clearly shown that he does not belong there,” the Dutchman said on his podcast DRS De Race Show. “He’s fast, but he’s a nasty guy.

“Do you remember what he did to Max (Verstappen) in Brazil (2018)?” van der Garde added. “He is not a team player and he can be a nasty guy at times.

“If that goes away, he can become a great driver.”

Van der Garde thinks a race suspension for Ocon in Montreal would be “painful” for Ocon’s F1 future.

“To be honest, he really screwed up,” he said. “Imagine being in a pre-race briefing, everyone’s discussing the strategy, figuring out what is important.

“They say ‘Ok guys, we’re tenth and eleventh. Please let’s make sure we score points today, because we really need them. So whoever is ahead after qualifying has priority. Make sure you provide backup’.

“But Ocon thinks ‘Yes, there’s a gap’ and he sticks his car in there. It’s so stupid. When you’re in a bad situation, you have to work together.”

However, van der Garde does not think Alpine will put Ocon on the bench for Canada.

“Personally, I think they’ll let him drive and he’ll get a reprimand.”

You may also like