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Ocon impact already "invaluable"

Ocon impact already "invaluable"

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Ocon impact already "invaluable"

Ocon impact already "invaluable"

Esteban Ocon's immediate impact with Renault has been hailed as "invaluable", with his inspiring arrival likened to that of Daniel Ricciardo a year previously.

After joining the French manufacturer from Mercedes, Ocon has yet to turn a wheel in anger, but he has already impressed team principal Cyril Abiteboul.

Assessing what the 23-year-old has so far achieved in his first few months with the team, Abiteboul told Sky Sports F1: "I can't say much about the on-track yet with us. I know what he's done with Force India, with Manor, and previously in his career.

"But what he has said, what he has done already with us is invaluable. He walked into the factories - maybe a bit more so in the French factory in Viry - and immediately the sort of halo of goodwill, of trust, of loyalty, of pride, that walked with him through the factory is quite unique.

"Frankly, it was remarkable when for the first time Daniel walked into the factory in the UK in Enstone, but it's equally remarkable the sort of attitude of Esteban when he walked into the factory in France, probably for different reasons.

"But this combination is very exciting. I can't wait to see it in action. Unfortunately, I need to wait a bit more."

After announcing his arrival in F1 with a solid half-a-season with Manor in 2016, Ocon enjoyed two strong seasons of results with Force India before making way for Lance Stroll at the end of 2018.

Abiteboul naturally has high hopes for his fellow Frenchman, pinpointing exactly what he expects despite still being relatively young and inexperienced.

Abiteboul added: "He knows the job he has, he knows where we are, the journey, what he has to do on track, but also off track.

"I'm not denying the fact we are still in the making, there is still an awful lot that needs to be done at a team level, and we need aspirational drivers.

"I don't believe, frankly, that it's just the job of a team principal to lead the team. It's actually, probably, more the job of a driver to do that because at the end of the day we've got a bit more than 1,000 people who are working day in day out for something, and that something is the two drivers who get the responsibility to drive the race car.

"We know very much it's at the back of our mind that when we go for drivers, clearly it's his pace, his talent, but also his attitude off track, and that's very much what I can already say about Esteban."

Before you leave, have a quick read of these:

Ricciardo: 'Emotion, excitement, eagerness' will cause 'chaos'

No rush in Ricciardo Renault renewal

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Sun 05 Jul

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