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Azerbaijan GP: Esteban Ocon’s ‘chaotic’ near-miss under investigation by FIA stewards

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Last update: 04/30/23 2:53 p.m.

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Esteban Ocon drove through a crowded pit lane after photographers started entering before the end of the Azerbaijan GP and described it as a ‘scary’ experience

Esteban Ocon drove through a crowded pit lane after photographers started entering before the end of the Azerbaijan GP and described it as a ‘scary’ experience

The FIA ​​is investigating the terrifying and ‘chaotic’ end to the Azerbaijan GP as Esteban Ocon entered the pit lane amid a crowded entrance.

Alpine had waited until the end of the penultimate lap to pit the Frenchman against his mandatory tire stop.

But, in shocking scenes, officials were already setting up parc fermé barriers and photographers congregating at the start of the pit lane in sight of the podium at the entrance to Ocon.

Photos in Ocon’s car show how close the Frenchman was to photographers, with several having to get out of the way. Fortunately, no one got hurt.

A statement from the FIA ​​read: “FIA representatives responsible for the parc fermé area at the pit entrance are required to report to the race marshals (at 2.30pm BST) due to ‘staff blocking the fast lane in pit lane on the final lap of the 2023 Azerbaijan Grand Prix as the pit lane remained open”.

As the incident unfolded, Sky Sports F1 pit lane reporter Ted Kravitz said: “There are people all over the pit lane.

“What is it? It’s a mess, it’s an absolute mess.

“We could see it coming, Alpine could see it coming, what’s going on there.”

David Croft added in a comment: “It’s a total and utter mess of organization and someone should have known about it.”

Speaking to Sky Sports F1 after the race, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said the FIA ​​needed to do better to avoid a similar incident in the future.

“It needs a review because Esteban is within his rights to stop on the last lap and finish in the pit lane if he wanted to.

“It’s something the FIA ​​needs to control a little better before the end of a race.”

A similar incident occurred at last year’s Australian GP when Alex Albon entered the pits as the parc fermé area was being constructed.



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