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2018 F1

Racing third Mercedes ‘would be fantastic’ – Ocon

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Esteban Ocon agrees that introducing three cars per team would solve his problem in F1.

With Lance Stroll set to move up to Force India, Frenchman Ocon could be left without a seat.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has suggested that F1 allowing teams to enter third cars for young drivers would be a solution.

“It would be fantastic,” Ocon smiled at Monza.

“I would be very happy if young drivers like myself, Charles Leclerc and George Russell had those opportunities. But I can’t see it happening so I don’t want to think about it.”

He is not yet out of the running at McLaren for 2019, but Ocon admits he might need to think about switching to DTM or Super Formula.

“If there’s no place we’ll see, but for now I am completely focused on formula one,” said Ocon.

As for the McLaren option, he responded: “I’m glad to hear Zak Brown said that, because McLaren is a great team with a great history and I have no doubt that sooner or later they will return to the fight.

“But it’s not up to me to answer. I have a contract with Mercedes and if they decide some option is optimal for my future, that’s what it will be.”

Mercedes’ Wolff proposed the third car idea because it is not just Ocon struggling to find a seat, but also Pascal Wehrlein and George Russell.

He rules out the millions it would cost for Mercedes to set up a Toro Rosso-style B team.

“If we do not succeed in being able to find a solution for all three of our (junior) drivers, then I will raise the question of the effectiveness of our development programme,” said Wolff.

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