Martin Brundle has led the outcry over an ugly, “blatant” moment where Force India’s Ocon, himself a Mercedes junior, allowed Lewis Hamilton by during the Monaco GP last weekend.
Brundle declared he is not proud of the incident where Ocon weakly moved his Force India aside to allow Hamilton to pass after he pitted for softer and faster tires after just 12 laps at the Monaco Grand Prix. The Mercedes driver came out in sixth place, behind Ocon. But Hamilton quickly passed the Frenchman to move into fifth behind teammate Valtteri Bottas.
Brundle wrote in a column for Skysports.com, claims it’s a bad look for the sport that Hamilton was so brazenly able to benefit from an alliance between Mercedes and Force India. Many have agreed with this view point.
But yet there were other incidents of this occurring down the field, most notable being Toro Rosso’s Brendan Hartley allowing Max Verstappen to pass easily during the race.
Some fans suggest that helping your teammate is one thing, but helping another team is not really sporting. Others think that doing this, particularly around Monaco, isn’t a bad thing.
Tifosi are particularly sensitive when it comes to their historical use of team and extra-team orders, pointing out that Magnussen in the Haas did not let Vettel through in Barcelona this year, holding him up considerably, but still get the finger pointed at them for team orders and ‘collusion’ between customer teams. Yet the press infrequently call out Red Bull and Mercedes who seem to have agreements with their B-Team and Customer Team respectively.
An interesting topic for the Jury to discuss I feel.