Wolff: Ocon and Mercedes are at a crossroads

Date published: September 22 2018

'Esteban Ocon and Mercedes are at a crossroads'

Facing an uncertain future in Formula 1, Toto Wolff admits Mercedes are at a “crossroads” with Esteban Ocon.

Ocon is on the verge of losing his Force India race seat, either before the end of this season or after it.

The Frenchman is expected to be replaced by Lance Stroll after the Canadian’s father bought the Force India team.

And despite being one of the stars on the grid, Ocon is struggling to find a new home.

According to reports he was lined by McLaren and Renault but they both went with different options because of his Mercedes’ ties.

And while Wolff has in the past stated that Mercedes want to hold onto Ocon, a future World Champion, he now acknowledges that they are at a “crossroads.”

He told Sky F1: “We are at a crossroads at the moment.

“We are going to see how it pans out with George and Esteban and then decide how we continue.”

He added: “It doesn’t feel right for someone like Esteban to sit out a year, but we have seen it in the past.

“I believe that the market is going to be very different again in the early summer next year, not only with us but also with some of the other teams.

“Some doors will open, others will remain closed, and it’s just about finding the next right opportunity for Esteban.”

As for George Russell, the Brit who is closing in on the Formula 2 title has been linked to a move to Williams.

“The two of them are at a very different stage in their careers,” Wolff added.

“George is still in the fight for the F2 championship, and it’s not done, and he clearly has the talent to go into Formula 1 but he’s not in as tricky a position as Esteban.

“I don’t think that the two of them will come into each other’s way.”

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