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F1 | Spanish GP | Ocon: P7 "feels like a victory"

It was another solid day behind the wheel in 2022 for Esteban Ocon as he secured six points at the Spanish Grand Prix.

( palabras)
F1 | Spanish GP | Ocon: P7 "feels like a victory"
Fuente imagen: Alpine F1 Team

Following a hugely disappointing qualifying for the Alpine F1 Team at the Circuit de Catalunya on Saturday, they turned things around on race day.

Starting P12, Esteban Ocon drove a very solid race to finish in P7. He now sits on 30 points and P9 in the Drivers' championship, with double the points of Kevin Magnussen in 10th. 

Only Valtteri Bottas beat him in the battle for best of the rest on Sunday. 

“I’m very pleased with today’s result. I think to get both cars back in the points from where we started was a bit unexpected," the Frenchman told MotorLAT and other media outlets in his post-race interview. 

“The rhythm in the first stint was fantastic. I overtook two or three cars from the first lap to the first pitstop.

“From there, yeah… there was nothing else that we could have done better because Valtteri had too much speed.

“We were fighting with Lando who was quite far behind, but he was fast as well.

“I’m very pleased and a double points finish for the team, they deserve it.”

Ocon found himself in P9 at the end of the opening lap, thanks in large part to the contact between Kevin Magnussen and Lewis Hamilton.

The Frenchman was then surprised at the ease of which he could pass Schumacher and Ricciardo in the early stages to move himself into 6th. That came after Sainz fell off the road.

“I was not expecting that.

“Usually you know they’re all looking after the tyres and stuff, and I was like ‘okay, on the first laps I’m going to take it easy’ because maybe that’s what they’re doing and they’re going to have more rhythm after that, but they still didn’t have and they were sliding quite a lot. So I thought ‘okay, let’s go’.

“We made easy moves and then I thought ‘let’s try on Valtteri’ but he had too much pace.”

In spite of both cars scoring points, Alpine had a strange weekend. Alonso and Ocon were both inside the top 10 during FP2, but completely fell away on Saturday as they finished P12 and P17 respectively.

To cap a confusing weekend for them the Friday pace returned on Sunday. Ocon admits debates have taken place to try and solve it.

“There is a lot for us to review this weekend, but we had very good talks with the team, with Fernando… very good debates and we have quite a few directions that we are quite clear on, and that the team and us need to identify exactly because it’s tricky at the moment with this new car to understand everything.

“Today feels like a victory,” Ocon stated.

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