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Esteban Ocon

Ocon: Azerbaijan GP pit lane near-miss could have been 'major incident'

The Alpine driver made a last lap pitstop, but nearly ran into people getting ready for the podium ceremony.

Ocon pit Baku
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Esteban Ocon feels his near-miss in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix Formula 1 pit-lane could have been a "major incident" as he narrowly avoided hitting a large group of people.

The Alpine driver was going long on a set of Hard tyres, hoping for a late Safety Car to bank a points position, but was forced to pit from ninth on the final lap to meet the requirement of making a pitstop.

However, as he peeled into the pits, the entry was blocked by photographers, marshals and other officials, getting set up for the podium ceremony, causing him to take action to avoid hitting anyone.

He pitted safely, and would finish 15th, but admitted post-race that he was "scared" upon seeing the people blocking his path upon entering the pits.

Representatives of the FIA have been summoned to the stewards over the incident.

Ocon 'scared' in pit-lane near-miss

"It is something we don't want to see. I don't understand why they were starting to prep the podium with one lap to go, we were still racing," Ocon explained to Viaplay.

"I am arriving at 300kph, braking in the last moment, crossing the line and I had to brake and avoid the people. It could have been a major, major incident and it is something we don't want to see.

"It is crazy and something I am going to discuss [with the FIA].

"It scared me, I am in control of the car, but I would not have liked to be the one in the pit lane."

It was a poor weekend for Alpine, with the sister car of Pierre Gasly finishing in 14th on a pointless visit to Baku for the team.

Also interesting:

Balve Bains is joined by RacingNews365.com Editorial Director Dieter Rencken and Asia Correspondent Michael Butterworth to dissect the key talking points from the last week in F1.

F1 2023 Azerbaijan Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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