Bruno Famin denies Alpine discussed benching Esteban Ocon for Canada

Dropping Esteban Ocon in Canada was never under consideration by Alpine, team boss Bruno Famin insists.

Esteban Ocon (FRA), Alpine F1 Team Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 9, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada, Preparation
Esteban Ocon (FRA), Alpine F1 Team Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 9,…

Alpine boss Bruno Famin says the team never discussed the idea of benching Esteban Ocon for the F1 Canadian Grand Prix after his crash with teammate Pierre Gasly in Monaco.

Ocon triggered a first-lap collision with teammate Gasly at the Monaco Grand Prix which angered Alpine team principal Famin, who warned there would be “consequences” for the incident.

In the wake of the incident there was intense speculation that Ocon, who will leave Alpine at the end of the season, could be dropped for this weekend’s race at Montreal, but Famin hit out at the false reports, insisting that was never a possibility.

"It has never been a point [of discussion],” he told Sky Sports F1 in Canada.

"We are all professional. Even if something bad happened, we talked, we discussed what we need to do to improve the situation for the coming race, but benching him for a race, it has never been a point.”

Speaking ahead of this weekend’s race in Montreal, Ocon rejected suggestions that the Monaco crash had influenced his impending Alpine exit.

Famin echoed Ocon’s comments, explaining that the Frenchman’s departure was already in the making following months of talks.

"I'm much more focused on what is coming than what happened before,” Famin said.

Bruno Famin (FRA) Alpine Motorsports Vice President and Alpine F1 Team Team Principal. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 8,
Bruno Famin (FRA) Alpine Motorsports Vice President and Alpine F1 Team…

"With Esteban and with Pierre, I said it several times, before. We have been talking for months and with Esteban I think it was quite clear that we were coming at the end of the cycle.

"He has been with us for five years, he's still here with us for the rest of the season, 16 races to go, and I'm sure we will do very good work altogether, I trust his professionalism."

Famin was also asked if the rumours about him speaking to Ocon individually before the race in Monaco was true.

“I never speak to the drivers one-to-one for this kind of thing,” Famin insisted.

“When we have races we all speak all together to make sure that everybody has the same information and everybody listens to the same information at the same time.

“In the decision we were clear before the race in Monaco, like it was clear for the race before and the previous one. It was clear.”

Famin reiterated that Alpine junior Jack Doohan, who had limited running in a rain-hit FP1 in Montreal, is in the frame to replace Ocon next year.

“Jack is an option,” he said. "We are preparing him.  He was testing in Zeltweg not a long time ago and he has a quite heavy testing programme.

"We are happy with that and let’s see how he develops. He is one possibility among others, but he is one possibility for sure.”

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