Toro Rosso would discuss with Ocon but only if…

Date published: September 29 2018

F1 2019 grid

Helmut Marko says the door to Toro Rosso is open for Esteban Ocon, he only has to break free from his Mercedes contract.

Ocon is struggling to find a place on next year’s grid, hampered by his Mercedes ties.

Although racing for Force India, the Frenchman remains a Mercedes junior after the German manufacturer backed his junior career.

Ocon, though, may have to walk away from Mercedes if he wants to race next season.

Toro Rosso have admitted they would be interested in signing him but only if he is completely “free” of all existing contracts.

“We have a seat,” Red Bull advisor Marko told Sky Sports. “Mercedes doesn’t have a seat.

“If he’s [Ocon] free from all contracts, we could discuss it. I mean all contracts.”

The Austrian also weighed in on Daniil Kvyat’s Toro Rosso return, saying he believes the driver – dropped from the programme in 2016 – deserves a second chance.

He said: “I saw he changed his approach and his personality, or he got more mature, and he was always fast.

“It was just a thing of mentality and I think now he has the right mentality.

“There are not so many drivers around. Conditions are right and am happy to have him back.”

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