Esteban Ocon said that he thinks the Sahara Force India F1 Team can aim for the points in the Australian Grand Prix despite enduring a difficult qualifying session on Saturday afternoon at Albert Park.
The young Frenchman could only drive his car to fifteenth on the grid in qualifying, setting a time some seven-tenths slower than team-mate Sergio Perez. This, he says, was partly due to traffic and partly due to the lack of dry running the teams had.
“It was a tough session, especially Q2 where I was really struggling with the front of the car and locking tyres,” admitted Ocon. “It was also difficult to find space in the traffic.
“We had a big job this weekend trying to understand the new upgrade and missing out on some dry running in final practice didn’t help.”
Discussing his chances in Sunday’s race, Ocon said he believes the team can look for points – but that finishing is the first battle.
“The race pace will be better tomorrow and I think we can aim for the points,” said the Frenchman. “It’s one of those races where just making the finish gives you a chance to pick up a result.
“Tomorrow is another day and we will keep fighting and see what we can achieve.”
Though he qualified fifteenth, Ocon will start fourteenth thanks to a five place grid penalty given to Valtteri Bottas following his gearbox change.