Esteban Ocon: “We will have to hope for a good start”

Esteban Ocon - Credit: Manor Racing

Esteban Ocon was disappointed to see his work to qualify ahead of both of the Sauber F1 Team drivers for the Brazilian Grand Prix mean nothing after he was handed a three-place penalty for blocking Jolyon Palmer, but accepted the penalty.

The Manor Racing MRT driver will therefore start at the back of the field at the Autódromo José Carlos Pace but was just 0.005 seconds shy of team-mate Pascal Wehrlein during the session, and still has belief that he can make something on race day to at least keep get back ahead of Sauber and stay there.

“I can’t say I’m satisfied with qualifying,” admitted Ocon. “We did get ahead of Sauber – both of them – but unfortunately that doesn’t count now because I have to line up behind them. That’s how it is and we will have to hope for a good start and push hard to get ahead of them.

“The track here is awesome and I love it, but it is very small and the last corner is pretty slow, so there was a lot of traffic. The first corner will be interesting tomorrow, so it’s important that we don’t get caught up in any situations and focus instead on using them to our advantage. We have a job to do as a team tomorrow and that is what I’m focused on.”