Esteban Ocon felt an appearance in the top ten shootout for the Chinese Grand Prix could have been a possibility had he not made a small mistake at the final corner on his final quick lap, with the Frenchman missing out by less than a tenth of a second.
The Sahara Force India F1 Team racer will start twelfth on the grid at the Shanghai International Circuit but felt he could have joined team-mate Sergio Perez inside the top ten but for the mistake, but it proves how something so small can have such a dramatic effect in an extremely close midfield battle.
“I’m not totally satisfied with today because I’d prefer to be starting further up the grid,” admitted Ocon. “The difference between making Q3 and not was just over a tenth, which I probably lost in the final corner with a small mistake.
“It shows just how close everybody is in the midfield.”
Ocon hopes to use the benefit of a free choice of starting tyre to make gains on Sunday, with the Frenchman aiming to add to his solitary point he has scored this season, which came last weekend in Bahrain.
“It’s a shame to miss out on Q3, but on the positive side I can start the race with a free choice of tyres,” said Ocon. “The target tomorrow is to score points again.”