Ocon shifts to ‘war mode' after 'wasted opportunity' F1 season

© XPB 

Esteban Ocon admits to an overall negative assessment of his 2023 campaign, the Alpine charger ruing too many incidents and retirements that transformed his season into a “wasted opportunity”.

However, undeterred, the French driver vows to transform his approach in the upcoming year, embracing a "war mode" mentality that will prioritize his racing performance above all else.

After suffering a laborious start to his season, Ocon managed to score a remarkable podium in Monaco. But that was as good as it got for the 27-year-old, whose next best result was a fourth-place finish in Las Vegas.

Over the course of his 22-race campaign, Ocon suffered more non-finishes than he cares to remember, with several DNFs caused by contacts with other cars.

With a determination to reclaim lost ground, the Alpine driver will embark on a new phase of focus and dedication.

The switch to "war mode" signifies his commitment to eradicating distractions and channeling his energies solely towards achieving racing success.

"I think there's been some very good things, some very good opportunities that we took,” he said, looking back on his year. “But the consistency overall hasn't been there.

“And we had too many DNFs. That has cost us, I think it's nine DNFs in total, probably the most of any drivers.

“If you remove the issue we had with the gearbox in Singapore, and the contact with Oscar [Piastri] in Austin, we could have been in the top 10 in the championship. So that's why it's a little bit of a wasted opportunity."

In a bid to boost his ranking in 2024, Ocon will head into the new year with a renewed mindset totally dedicated to the task at hand.

"From January 2 until the first test I will be back fully into training camp,” he said. “I'm going to be more doing the way I was doing it in 2022, which is no life, flat out, only racing.

“We've been doing a lot of different things and activations outside the track this year.

“That's going to change next year. It's back to war mode and fully focused on the racing side. Before that there's going be the Christmas party of the team, there's going be some simulator work.

“I'm going be able to have a couple of days seeing my family that I haven't seen for a while. We're going to have some good times with friends, with Mick [Schumacher], with all my friends in December as well, and then it's fully focused on next year."

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