The Force India driver is set to lose his place alongside Sergio Perez to Lance Stroll next year. Ocon, who is backed by Mercedes, admitted their engine customer team Williams is his last chance to find a place for the 2019 F1 season.
“Williams is a great team, they have been world champions in the past, they have been fighting with us hard last year. They have a tough time [now] but all teams have tough times.”
When asked by RaceFans, Ocon denied he would sever his ties with Mercedes in order to improve his chances of finding a drive elsewhere.
“I think my only good thing at the moment is that I have great support with Mercedes. They will never let me go and they will always push with me to find solution. At the moment that’s the only good thing I have. There’s nothing else.”
Ocon said he is unlikely to race elsewhere if he is unable to find an F1 drive for 2019. “For sure it could be an option to be on the bench next year,” he said. “But even if that’s the case I will be back in ’20 and I will be back stronger and prepared.”
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No Formula E or IndyCar switch
He discounted the possibility of a move into IndyCar or Formula E, even temporarily. “I’m not interested [in IndyCar],” said Ocon in response to a question from RaceFans. “I’m interested in Formula 1, that’s the only thing I want to do. So that’s my only focus.
“I like racing, I like cars, I think it’s a great series. But the only thing I look at is Formula 1. It’s my only target to be world champion one day, there is nothing else that counts really.”
Ocon admitted the safety standards in IndyCar are also a concern following the serious injuries his former Mercedes DTM team mate Robert Wickens suffered in a crash earlier this year. “Looking at Robert, which I know very well, of course it breaks you a bit also from that. But anyway if that wasn’t the case I would not look at IndyCar.”
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2018 F1 season
- ‘It doesn’t matter if we start last’: How Red Bull’s junior team aided Honda’s leap forward
- Honda’s jet division helped F1 engineers solve power unit problem
- McLaren Racing losses rise after Honda split
- Ricciardo: Baku “s***show” was Red Bull’s fault
- “Drive to Survive Episode 1: All to Play For” reviewed