Ocon: Alpine has "no margin" in battle for F1 points 

Esteban Ocon thinks his Alpine team doesn't have any "margin" for error if it wants to score points in the 2021 Formula 1 season.

Ocon: Alpine has "no margin" in battle for F1 points 

The team previously known as Renault endured a tough season-opening Bahrain GP, with Fernando Alonso retiring and teammate Ocon finishing down in a disappointing 13th position.

It was the first time since last year's Spanish GP that neither of the Enstone team's cars finished in the points.

Ocon's race chances at Sakhir were compromised by starting from 16th on the grid after he was unable to complete his final flying lap when he encountered yellow flags for an incident involving Carlos Sainz.

With an extremely close fight in the midfield, Ocon believes Alpine needs to get everything right in order to be in the top 10.

"It is clear that what hurt us is the starting position," said Ocon. "If we were starting inside the top 10, of course you are already inside the points, but even 11th or 12th there would have been a chance for us to get into the points.

"We don't have any margin and we need to extract the maximum out of the car to be able to do that.

"We have clear ways of seeing where we are lacking a little bit of performance or where we have an area to improve. We know where it is, it is up to us to find that and find more pace for the next events so that gives us a bit more of a margin."

Read Also:

While Ocon has hailed the 2021 Renault engine as the best he's driven in Formula 1, the Frenchman acknowledges Alpine still needs to recover some of the chassis performance lost through the regulation changes.

He says, however, that his team has already pinpointed the key areas where it needs to improve.

"Of course the new rules have changed a lot of things," he added. "As everybody says, it is a year that we keep the same rules and carry-over from last year, but this is not the reality.

"In fact, most of the car is new for everybody. For us for sure as we know what we have on the car. Everybody lost a good amount of grip and downforce and everybody is trying to get that back on the cars.

"At the moment with the new rules everybody is slower and we are as well compared to the car we had last year so we know where to find the time and we know where to recover that laptime.

"The part of spotting where it is, that is now done, now we have to do it."

shares
comments

Related video

Haas "won't put effort" into anything beyond fighting Williams

Previous article

Haas "won't put effort" into anything beyond fighting Williams

Next article

Wolff: Nobody foresaw hostility between Hamilton and Rosberg

Wolff: Nobody foresaw hostility between Hamilton and Rosberg
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Esteban Ocon
Teams Alpine
Author Pablo Elizalde
How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for 2021 Prime

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for 2021

In Max Verstappen's Formula 1 career to date, he has been cast as the 'pretender', an acknowledged top-line performer without the car to regularly challenge Lewis Hamilton. But that no longer applies in 2021, and the start to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was the most telling signal yet of what we can expect from their duel this year

How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Prime

How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Prime

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments.

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Prime

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Prime

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Prime

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Prime

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping .

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021