The Alpine F1 Team’s Esteban Ocon scored points for the week in succession for the Enstone-based outfit as he came home in sixth place having the started the race from fifth on the grid. The Frenchman had a great start to the event, holding his position at the startvof the race before settling into a nice rthym.
Speaking following the action he said:
It’s some good points scored again for us and I’m happy overall with my race. The fight with Fernando was enjoyable. It was hard, fair, wheel to wheel racing, which reminded me of the karting days. With these cars, you can really race and follow, which is good for the sport. It’s a shame we couldn’t put both cars into the points but we’re showing that we’re competitive and we must continue that. It was an exciting end to the race as well just beating Lando [Norris] to the line. It felt a bit like redemption for last year!
Fernando Alonso started the race from seventh place but was forced to retire from the event and speaking following the action he said:
We don’t know what happened yet but we’ll investigate the issue tonight. We did lose a chunk of points today, but it’s good to see the car performing well tonight and all weekend. I think we deserved sixth place today and we were having a good race, so it’s bad luck we couldn’t get to the end. The battle with Esteban on track was fair, we always respect one another out there. We had some close fights in Bahrain too and always try to do the best for the team. I was a little bit faster during the race and so I made the overtake and I had to watch out for Bottas as well. We could have scored double points tonight, but we are still fourth in the championship and we go again in Australia.
Alpine F1 Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer commented following the 50 lap race saying:
We have mixed feelings from today’s race and, in general, it’s another strong result, which underlines our competitiveness. It’s a great result for Esteban to finish in sixth place. He’s been solid all weekend and it’s good for him to convert a strong qualifying performance into a healthy bag of points. We do have a taste of disappointment that we were unable to put both of our cars into the points with Fernando unfortunately retiring from the race after driving very well all evening. We’re investigating the issue to see what exactly has occurred. It’s clear our car has the potential to fight for big points as demonstrated by both of our drivers tonight. We’re happy to let them race hard and fair as, in the end, having both drivers extracting the absolute maximum from the car is what we’re here to do. Everyone at the team will continue to work hard on our return to Enstone and Viry to best prepare ourselves for Formula 1’s highly anticipated return to Melbourne in two weeks’ time. Well done to everyone at the team, we’ll keep pushing!