Perez: Ocon may not return to Formula 1

Date published: January 17 2019

Sergio Perez: Esteban Ocon is taking a risk by missing 2019.

Sergio Perez has warned former teammate Esteban Ocon that it’s “a risky move” as he prepares to sit out the 2019 season.

Mercedes development driver Ocon lost his seat at Racing Point to Lance Stroll, after a consortium headed by his father Lawrence bought the bankrupt Force India team.

Stroll’s switch from Williams left Ocon without a drive, but he is still regarded as one of the brightest prospects in Formula One.

Ocon’s former Force India teammate Perez believes, however, that Mercedes are taking a huge risk by letting their young hopeful miss 2019.

Speaking to Motorsport.com, Perez said: “I think a year out of this can change so much.

“Maybe he comes back and drives for Mercedes, but you never know what the future will hold.

“So, it is a risky move.

“I think he is lacking some maturity still, but I think that will come with the time.”

Perez does believe though that Ocon can return to the sport with the Silver Arrows behind him.

“He is in a great position with Mercedes,” Perez explained.

“He definitely deserves a seat in Formula 1, he is one of the best drivers in this sport.”

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