Esteban Ocon, Force India, Sochi Autodrom, 2018

Force India drivers admit positions change didn’t work

2018 Russian Grand Prix

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The Force India drivers felt the team gained nothing from swapping their positions twice during the race as they tried unsuccessfully to pass Kevin Magnussen.

Esteban Ocon said he will discuss the tactics with the team after being asked to let team mate Sergio Perez past, then getting his place back later in the race.

“We tried to swap to see if someone could get the car in front but we have to review this because I don’t think it worked on that time,” he said.

“We have to review [it] but I think it would have been very tough anyway for both of us [to pass]. I understand the team’s point to be able to try but it didn’t work out today so let’s see what we could have done better.”

Perez had slightly fresher tyres than Ocon in the second stint but neither driver was able to get close enough to make a move on the Haas.

“When Sergio was behind he couldn’t get close to me and when it was the opposite I couldn’t get close to him,” said Ocon. “The race was fixed from there.”

Perez claimed the team gave him the chance to attack Magnussen because he was lapping more quickly.

“The team tried to maximise the day,” he said. “They gave me the chance to push into Magnussen because we thought at the time that I was a bit quicker.”

He did not object to handing the place back to Ocon later in the race: “Fair enough, I didn’t get the position.”

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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 “Force India drivers admit positions change didn’t work”

  1. A bit of a “water is wet” kindof quote here…

  2. I think it succesfully achieved them not hitting each other and retirering.

  3. Is Ocon better than Perez? If he is, it’s not visible for the human eye ;-)

    1. Ocon is a better qualifier, but on race day Perez is still a bit better, much like a Hamilton vs Alonso

  4. MAG is the best defender in F1 – like him a lot… His car was slower but still he kept playing with those Fi racers..
    Nice weekend from MAG – funny to see how this UK site will avoid giving him credit this time… But they might find some rubbish somewhere as usual…
    Well done MAG

    1. Well.. Let’s blame a British website for its bias when a mediocre driver puts in a slightly above mediocre performance. He has the car that’s the best of the rest this weekend, yet he finished behind a Sauber… And for some reason he hasn’t got his due credit.

  5. I think Magnussen was managing tyres or gas and probably had reserve speed he could use when they tried to attack.

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