Ocon: 'I've been prepared for Suzuka for 10 years'

© XPB 

Esteban Ocon has acquitted himself well  since his Formula 1 race debut  at Spa this year, even succeeding in out-qualifying his Manor team at Sepang.

The 20-year-old Frenchman certainly enjoyed the best start in his four-race career in F1 last Sunday, gaining 10 positions on the opening lap, which opened wide many eyes in the press room.

"I finally got the procedure right and it was a really good one," Ocon said. "It is a shame there is no on board video of that!"

"The start is almost everything now but the race is so long and you can make up a lot of time, but at the start you can gain a lot of positions.

"If it is a track where you cannot pass then I would have kept them behind. It was tough, we were struggling a bit with our performance so it was hard to keep them behind, even though I managed it for a few laps."

Since Ocon's arrival at Manor, in replacement of Rio Haryanto, the Frenchman has settled in nicely and gradually optimized along with his team his interaction and approach, as last Saturday's qualifying session in Malaysia demonstrated.

"For sure we improved massively regarding the organisation of the team and how we worked. We had a great weekend compared to the beginning of my season and I am pretty happy with this.

"But it is not the target to beat Pascal for us, it is to beat the Saubers and to do a good job and be satisfied and extract the maximum from the car."

Ocon will be racing for the first time in Suzuka, as well as at the remaining venues with the exception of Abu Dhabi.

But a modern F1 driver obviously has access to many tools in order to adapt to a new track. In this regard, Suzuka bears no secrets for the Manor rookie.

"I've been prepared for 10 years, playing games since I was a kid and driving on this track, I feel like I know it.

"I did a track walk this morning, it was exactly the same so I feel it has helped me a lot. It is not something new for me, even though it my first time here."

Technical snapshot - Malaysia

Scene at the Malaysian Grand Prix

2016 Malaysian Grand Prix - Quotes of the week

Breakfast with... Gianni Morbidelli

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter