Alpine reportedly wanted to suspend Ocon for Canadian GP

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Alpine had planned on suspending Esteban Ocon for this week’s Canadian Grand Prix following his run-in with teammate Pierre Gasly in Monaco according to a report from French daily L’Equipe.

Ocon tangled with Gasly on the opening lap of the race in the Principality when he opted for a risky move on the inside at the tight Portier corner only to make contact with his teammate on the exit.

The claash sent Ocon airborne and into retirement while Gasly was fortunately able to carry his car to the checkered flag and claim a top-ten finish.

However, Ocon’s maneuver, for which the Frenchman was handed a five-place grid penalty for next weekend’s race in Montreal, triggered the ire of Alpine team principal Bruno Famin.

In the heat of the moment, the latter warned of consequences, hinting at a potential sanction being levied upon Ocon.

In the end however, Alpine will tackle the Canadian Grand Prix with its usual line-up. But Famin’s initial plan had indeed been to punish Ocon for his ill-fated move by sidelining him for this week’s round of racing at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

But L'Équipe contends that it was Alpine F1's lawyers who advised Famin not to take action, fearing Ocon would contest the decision and fire back on legal grounds.

"The desire of the team's bosses was clear: to suspend their driver for the Canadian Grand Prix on Sunday and put reserve driver Jack Doohan in the cockpit," wrote the French daily.

“A decision that had to be approved by the lawyers of the Normandy-based manufacturer.”

But Alpine was apparently reluctant to find itself with another legal case on its hands, as it had with Oscar Piastri during the summer of 2022.

“This time, based on the advice of its team of legal experts, Alpine understood that it would be more than risky to suspend Ocon in Canada,” L’Equipe added.

"The risk was seeing him arrive in Montreal with a bailiff to note the deprivation of his right to work and enforce his legal right to race and therefore get into his car.”

On Monday, Alpine and Ocon announced that they would part ways at the end of the 2024 season. The latter vowed however to put his “full focus” on delivering on track and having a successful remainder of the season.

But in light of L’Equipe’s report, there could be some tension in the Alpine camp this week in Canada.

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