Ocon: Sacrificing Q3 didn't feel "great"

Esteban Ocon says Force India’s decision to sacrifice a shot on Q3 for a better race strategy didn’t feel "great", but had to be done.

Ocon: Sacrificing Q3 didn't feel "great"

With Pirelli’s fastest hypersoft tyre proving fragile in Mexico, Force India felt it better to avoid being forced to start on it so went for the harder compounds in qualifying.

Although the team did not make it in to Q3 because of the tactic, Ocon still thinks it was the right thing to do after he ended up in 11th spot with free choice of compound for the race.

“It is not great I would say to be sacrificing one session and then going, thinking about the race on Saturday,” said Ocon, when asked by Motorsport.com about how it felt.

“It is not great but if it can help us get a great result I am totally down [with it].”

Ocon said that the expected high degradation from the hypersoft meant there was little incentive in trying to use it in Q2 if it meant it had to be used in the race.

“P11 was our target, minimum target to get,” said Ocon about the tactic. “That is what we are having and that is great.

“If we went into Q3, then being able to use the hypersofts, we could have challenged the Renaults, so it is a shame.

“We had the pace clearly to be in Q3 if we used the hypersoft, but I hope this is going to help us for the strategy. And for the hypersoft runners I think it is going to have a big impact in the race.”

Ocon had only driven the hyper soft tyre before qualifying, so his laps in Q2 – running first the super soft and then the ultra soft – were his first on another compound.

But despite feeling that Force India has made the right strategy call, he accept that if it rains in the race then the team could look silly if it has sacrificed grid positions.

“If it rains in the night it will reset [the track] definitely and it will be better for us because there will be more deg for the hypersoft,” he said. “But if it rains in the race we messed up the strategy!”

Esteban Ocon, Racing Point Force India VJM11

Esteban Ocon, Racing Point Force India VJM11

Photo by: Andy Hone / LAT Images

shares
comments
Hartley "not allowed" to explain controversial Gasly claim
Previous article

Hartley "not allowed" to explain controversial Gasly claim

Next article

Mercedes: Hamilton engine safe from "unusual" Bottas failure

Mercedes: Hamilton engine safe from "unusual" Bottas failure
Load comments
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Prime

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Prime

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Prime

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season Prime

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as Stuart Codling finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1 Prime

How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. Nigel Roebuck recalls a remarkable champion.

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022
How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam Prime

How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam

George Russell joining Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes this year gives it arguably the best line-up in Formula 1 – if it can avoid too many fireworks. After serving his apprenticeship at Williams, Russell is the man that Mercedes team believes can lead it in the post-Hamilton era, but how will he fare against the seven-time champion? Motorsport.com heard from the man himself

Formula 1
Jan 6, 2022
How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications Prime

How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications

OPINION: The Formula 1 season just gone was the second to be completed under the dreaded shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in many ways it was much more ‘normal’ than 2020. Here’s the story of how the championship’s various organisers delivered a second challenging campaign, which offers a glimpse at what may be different next time around

Formula 1
Jan 5, 2022
The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future Prime

The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future

As attitudes towards the motor car and what powers it change, Formula 1 must adapt its offering. Mark Gallagher ponders the end of fossil fuels

Formula 1
Jan 3, 2022