Ocon targets ‘points at every race’

Date published: March 15 2017

Esteban Ocon has set a personal target of “points at every race” as he gears up for his first full season in Formula 1.

On the back of a half season with Manor, the Frenchman was called up by Force India to replace Nico Hulkenberg, who departed for Renault.

Although this season will be Ocon’s first full campaign, both the driver and the team are expecting him to deliver from race one.

“I have to deliver straight away,” he told the official F1 website. “The team wants me to replace Nico – and that includes results.

“So no time to get up to speed – I have to get up to speed straight away.

“Hence the good preparation with the team over the winter. In the end results translate into more funds – and that means a better, faster car. It is that simple.”

He added: “My personal target would be to score points at every race. That would be pretty cool.

“Melbourne is the place where everybody unleashes his machine, so we will see what the reality check is.

“I have a super feeling about the VJM10. The balance is right and the Mercedes engine is simply the best, also when it comes to reliability. So let’s see if I can trust my feelings.”

As for his team-mate Sergio Perez, Ocon says he has already learnt a lot from the Mexican driver during the two pre-season tests.

“He had an awesome season last year, yes,” he said. “He pulled the team up. It was very impressive to see what he did.

“Every year Force India is gaining position, so I am looking forward to working with him.

“I have learnt a lot from him already at the two tests – but testing is one thing: it’s as soon as we arrive at the first race that I want to challenge him!”

He added: “We go through data, we discuss our findings from every session. His feedback is really great.”