Esteban Ocon reflects on leaving Alpine at the end of F1 2024, as he and Pierre Gasly adds on their relation too.

Ahead of the F1 Canadian GP weekend, Alpine announced the departure of Ocon from the Renault family after they decided to end their association with the end of the current deal, which runs out at the end of the 2024 season.

Having joined Alpine in 2020, at the end of 2024, it will be a five-year partnership where Ocon took a win and three podiums. The non-renewal is slightly surprising considering the silly season situation. There are seats available but there is a list of drivers too.

At the moment, he has been linked to seats at Haas and Sauber/Audi but Mercedes can’t be ruled out considering his close ties with the manufacturer and Toto Wolff. But nothing is set as Ocon notes of an announcement soon when it materialises.

The Frenchman is grateful of the time with Alpine and notes that one incident in Monaco didn’t decide anything. In fact, he laughed off the speculation about Jack Doohan replacing him for the Australian’s scheduled rookie FP1 run in Canadian GP.

For the rest of the 2024 F1 season, Ocon is certain of professionalism from his end and also Alpine’s, while he doesn’t see any issues with Gasly either. His teammate has kind words for him, but refrained from giving any media bite to make ‘headlines’.

Departing Alpine –

Ocon: “I mean, I’ve said pretty much everything in my statement, you know, already, but we’ve been talking with the team for several months. And Alpine is a big group, Renault is a big group. And it’s the kind of team that is not taking decisions on just a single race. We’ve been talking, we’ve agreed mutually to come to an end, basically, at the end of the contract. I’ve spent five years inside this team. We had some amazing moments or more tough ones, but five years in terms of Formula 1 world is a long time.

“Definitely and, yeah, I’m exciting to for the challenge ahead and exciting to finish the collaboration on the high, that, you know, I’ve been part for a long time. I mean five years – it’s a long time. You know, in Formula 1 terms, I think, there is not many drivers, you know, that have been going through the Enstone team and the Renault Group that have spent that many years in this team. And we’ve achieved a lot all together. But I think it’s a good time that we part ways and decide to have other challenges from both ways.”

How relation now until end of F1 2024 –

Ocon: “It doesn’t, it doesn’t, because come to speak, we are all together with the team. I talked with Bruno, I was at the factory for normal preparation before Canada. With Bruno, we were just talking about a lot of things and, yeah, there’s no awkward moment, there is no damage between our relationships altogether. Everything has been discussed, and we move on, and we keep racing to try and do the best we can. What I want to do is try to do the best I can for the rest of the season, finish on a high with the team, with the story that we started.

“I think that’s very important for me. I’ve joined the team in 2020 and I’ve always been trying to do the best that I could and for the team, so that will remain. Honestly, I feel good. I’m happy to be here. I’m excited to race. There is no change of motivation or feeling from my side, I’m always trying to do the best I can whatever situation there is. I feel relaxed, I feel ready to go and I look forward to do a good weekend here.”

Doohan speculation –

Ocon: “[laughs] I’ve seen that a lot from media, and it’s not the case at all. As drivers, we have to give, as a team, we have to give two FP1s for rookies. I gave mine to Jack in Canada. It was a track that was going to be green to start with, with the new tarmac. I got a five place grid penalty as well, unfortunately for the race. So, no, my qualifying was a lot less dependent than usual. It’s more the race trim. And the team, as a team point of view, we think we are going to have probably a more competitive car later in the year. So for us to do that early is a good thing, instead of doing it in Mexico, Abu Dhabi, like we usually do.”

Gasly relation –

Ocon: “We’ve discussed things internally. We had a media briefing before, and yeah, I mean everything is okay inside the team. There is no drama like you guys seem there is. As a driver and with the team I have always followed the instructions I’ve been given, how to race. So, there has been no changes.

Future –

Ocon: “I have nothing to announce yet. As I said, I will announce my future in due course, when the right time comes. At the moment, I’m just focused on what’s going to be happening in Canada and what’s going to be in the next coming races. I think it’s good to be doing some racing, which is the most important thing and what I’m excited about. I mean, we’ve decided to together to just not continue after 2024. So, yeah, I mean, it’s been discussions going forward with Alpine and with various other teams as well and, yeah, we will see what the future lies ahead.

“But I’m excited to have some other challenges in the future. You never know in Formula 1 what the future can lie. But as I said, I’m excited for future challenges. I got 16 more races to do and it’s important to do a good job and coming to the races motivated as I’ve always been and enjoy what I do. For sure my target is to be in Formula 1, that is very clear. That’s where I enjoy to be.”

Discussions post Monaco –

Gasly: “Well, I think the directives were pretty clear in Monaco. Unfortunately, it’s not what happened on track. But yeah, I’m pretty confident that moving forward, we won’t face any issues.”

Thoughts on Ocon leaving –

Gasly: “Yeah, it’s been… I’m just taking time to think, because I know how you guys are going to take every single word that comes out. It’s a long story between Esteban and myself. And I think so far in the last year and a half, we managed to work and co-operate very professionally. So I think this is important to mention. It hasn’t always been easy, as you would imagine from two very competitive drivers. But yeah, considering the story between us, I think it’s been It’s been good. So, yeah, I will say I’ll stick to these lines.”

Here’s Kush Maini, Victor Martins testing for Alpine

Here’s Alpine on progress plus line-up

Here’s news on Esteban Ocon leaving

Here’s Esteban Ocon on online abuse

Here’s link to a F1 Discord channel, join in to interact