Esteban Ocon, Renault, Sochi Autodrom, 2016

Ocon to make practice return with Renault in Spain

2016 Spanish Grand Prix

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Esteban Ocon will drive for Renault in the first practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix.

The team’s reserve driver previously tested for them at the end of 2014, when they were Lotus, including in practice for the final race of the year in Abu Dhabi. His first outing was described as “exceptional” by the team’s trackside operations director Alan Permane.

Ocon revealed the news on his Twitter feed. He is the reigning GP3 champion and won the European Formula Three championship in 2014 when he was backed by Lotus.

The 19-year-old will make his DTM debut for Mercedes at the Hockenheimring next weekend.

Renault ran Sergey Sirotkin during practice for this weekend’s Russian Grand Prix.

2016 Spanish Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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7 comments on “Ocon to make practice return with Renault in Spain”

  1. Great news, hopefully this is the first step in a long F1 career.

  2. Tom (@newdecade)
    1st May 2016, 16:29

    Palmer isn’t going to see out the season at Renault. With the works backing now he doesnt bring the team anything.

  3. I wonder if it will be Palmer’s car this time?

  4. Big Mag (@)
    1st May 2016, 16:31

    Lets who will leave the seat for Ocon. If it is Kevin Magnussen, then its another prof, that money rules and this could also hit Ocon in the future.

    1. Big Mag (@)
      1st May 2016, 16:32

      *Let us see who will leave the seat.

  5. Magnussen missed practice and got a great result, so why not do it again.
    I’m just surprised they’re not putting a pay driver in both cars.

  6. They are breeding him for a seat next year or so. When Palmer’s contract is done.

    It is very important for Renault to get exceptional drivers asap. While Palmer and Magnusen are good, they are far from exceptional. Not sure drivers even exist that good, to bring Renault in to the mix.

    In 3 years When car gets good, they need best drives available. IF by the end of the year they see Palmer consistently trailing Magnusen, its time to give him a boot.

    So 2017 should bring about slow decline of pay drivers, more demanding the cars become, more important the driver, especially in slower cars where the cars are harder to drive.

    Teams should have ability to bring in new drivers…

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