Renault rubbish Ocon exit rumours

Michelle Foster
Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo

Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo

Esteban Ocon will be a Renault driver next season with Cyril Abiteboul insisting the driver has Renault’s “confidence”.

Ocon joined Renault at the beginning of this year’s championship, replacing Nico Hülkenberg as Daniel Ricciardo’s team-mate.

The Frenchman, though, has yet to live up to expectations.

Ocon was considered a star of the future during his time at Force India, now Racing Point, but a year on the sidelines in 2019 has left him playing catch up.

And Ricciardo’s not an easy driver to catch up to.

The Aussie has double his team-mate’s points as well as a podium leading to rumours that Ocon’s seat may not be guaranteed for 2020.

According to the rumour mill, AlphaTauri driver, and Italian GP winner, Pierre Gasly has been sniffing around and holding talks with Alain Prost.

Abiteboul, though, is adamant Ocon’s not going anywhere.

“Next year, he (Ocon) will be with us and obviously he has all of our confidence – all of my confidence,” he told

Esteban Ocon

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He has, however, warned the 24-year-old that he needs to up his game.

“He must manage to make progress and set achievable objectives in order to be in a dynamic of success,” said the Renault managing director.

Ocon’s task could become even trickier next season as the Frenchman will be up against Fernando Alonso.

Like Ocon, though, the Spaniard has spent time out of Formula 1 – two years in fact – so he too will need some time to find his feet.

Ocon needs to seize his opportunity, and his race seat.

“It’s going to be, for sure, awesome,” Ocon said of partnering the double World Champion.

“I’m just watching [Fernando’s] series now… just trying to see how he is in work and how everything is going when he’s actually competing. It’s very interesting – I’m learning the character.

“Obviously he’s very involved now in the technical developments and how everything is going with the car. He’s very, very in here, giving his opinion as well, which is great.

“And I think it’s going to be that little last detail that we need to keep improving, and it’s going to be very important for the development of next year’s car.”

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