Ocon joins the French elite class of F1 winners – .

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Ocon joins the French elite class of F1 winners – .


Budapest (AFP)

After coming out on top of the chaotic Hungarian GP on Sunday, Esteban Ocon joined a small group of French Formula 1 winners.

The man from a modest family from Normandy became the 14th Frenchman of the F1 winners club alongside the quadruple world champion Alain Prost, 51 wins, Olivier Panis, winner in Monaco in 1996, and Pierre Gasly, the winner in Monza last year.

In addition to his new hero status in France, he won Sunday’s race in an Alpine, renamed Renault, in his first season on the F1 circuit.

Ocon danced as La Marseillaise was played on the podium in the same way he performed in front of the crowd after abandoning his bright blue vehicle on the track and running with his arms up in the air past the ranks of fans on the Hungaroring track.

Lewis Hamilton said Ocon “has been a shining star for some time.”

Hamilton would be in a good position to know because the 24-year-old was a Mercedes test driver in 2019.

This is where Ocon gained a reputation for being able to complete his tasks, and in a way, it was with persistence that he won on Sunday.

During his Mercedes days he was known to spend entire nights in the factory simulator setting up the various technical settings for world champion Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.

After his parents invested their savings in his career, Ocon lost his spot at Racing Point in 2018 when Lance Stroll was appointed following his father’s investment in the team.

Then came his chance with Alpine where he teamed up with the Spanish ace Fernando Alonso, the former double champion.

Alonso, now 40, did a lot on Sunday to hold back Hamilton as the pair struggled for several rounds, ultimately allowing Ocon to pass the post.

“My personal goals are to push the car to its limits in every race so that we can say at the end of every weekend that we’ve done our best,” he said ahead of the season.

Smiling broadly as he strolled his lanky figure on the catwalk, he promised it would be a “magical Monday party” when he returned home to celebrate with his loved ones after taking the flag past Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Alonso. , who have 13 world titles between them.

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