Ocon announces exit from Alpine at the end of the year

Winner of the Hungarian Grand Prix three years ago departs after a series of incidents with teammate Pierre Gasly and general lack of general pace.

In a joint statement, Alpine and current driver Esteban Ocon have agreed to part ways at the end of the 2024 season.

Abrupt end

“We would like to firstly thank Esteban for his commitment to the team for the past five years. During his time, we have celebrated some fantastic moments together, the best of which coming at the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix with a memorable race win,” said Alpine team principal Bruno Famin.

Frenchman Ocon won his first, and the constructor’s first, Grand Prix at the Hungaroring in 2021 as part of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

“We wish Esteban the very best for the next chapter of his driving career when that moment comes,” added Famin.

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“I’ve crossed paths with so many inspiring individuals in my time here and there are too many people to thank for their hard work, passion, and dedication to the cause,” said Ocon.

“We had many ups and certainly some downs, but all I can say is that it was an honour racing alongside you, whether you were at the factories or trackside.

“Still, there is a long way to go this season and my focus and energy is 100 percent dedicated to this team.”

Ocon added that “news would be announced in due course” regarding his future going into the next F1 season.

Tipping point?

At last month’s Monaco Grand Prix, Ocon drew the ire of Alpine management when his attempt to overtake teammate Pierre Gasly resulted in a racing-ending collision resulted in a five-place grip drop for this weekend Canadian Grand Prix.

“I’m just so disappointed with Esteban and for the whole team,” Famin said.

“It shouldn’t have happened. We’ve thousands of people working for us and we cannot afford this behaviour. We had clear instructions before the race and this wasn’t respected.

“And you should never take that much risk to take both cars out with your team-mate. I am sure it will be discussed, but we can’t afford to have a similar situation in the future.”

Online abuse

Despite issuing an apology on social media platform X soon after, Ocon took aim what he described as a series of online attacks after the race.

A lot was said after the Monaco Grand Prix. If I received numerous messages of support I was deeply hurt by the amount of insults and negativity I got online about my character, my driving and about my career,’ said.

“The distorted comments and gross misinformation that I’ve seen online over the past few days regarding my capacity to work with a team are false, hurting and damaging.

Ocon concluded by saying, “I respect Pierre as a teammate and rival. We’ve always worked collaboratively and professionally in the team and that’s going to continue. I can’t wait to race in Montreal.”

Despite speculation of Alpine possibly replacing Ocon with test and reserve driver Jack Doohan for this weekend round in Canada, no official announcement has yet been made.

Additional reporting by Charl Bosch

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