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Ocon: I’m ready to race in F1

Esteban Ocon stays tight-lipped on the specifics of his potential F1 future, but he insists he is ready for the highest-level regardless.
Esteban Ocon feels he is 'ready to race' at the highest level after completing two days of mileage in the championship leading Mercedes W07 at Silverstone, the latest in a series of F1 tests for the highly-rated youngster.

Managed by Mercedes – with whom he races in DTM - but 'loaned' to Renault for test and reserve duties, the reigning GP3 Series champion is considered one of motorsport's brightest prospects and has been tipped with a promotion to F1 in 2017 with the French manufacturer.

Having already partaken in two FP1 sessions with Renault this year as part of his development programme, the latest outing for Ocon in the dominant Mercedes W07 further emphasised his potential as he completed 262 trouble-free laps.

With his sights set firmly on a move into F1 next year, though Ocon insists he isn't giving much attention to the Renault speculation or the suggestion he could be placed in a Mercedes-affiliated team, he says he is ready for F1 regardless.

“The boss will decide what they want there in Renault. My target is to be in Formula One next year so I'm working as much as I can and getting ready for next year.

“The team was happy. I'm ready to race. I've been there for a long time around the Formula One paddock, so yeah I'm ready to race whenever there is an opportunity.

“At the moment, it's still too early to speak about that. I still have outings in FP1 that I will have to do. We will have to keep working on that and focus there.”

READ: Why Palmer is 'not worried' by Ocon threat to Renault seat

Having driven the Renault RS16 in FP1 at the British Grand Prix, though Ocon refused to be drawn on direct comparisons with the Mercedes, he admits any full-time race seat there would involve a lot of development.

“The target at Renault is to be world champions at some point. At the moment, there is a lot of work to do but that's what they want. They want to build the performance back and back to how they were before. I don't know if it's going to happen but for sure they are working as hard as they can.”

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