Esteban Ocon’s race victory in the Hungarian Grand Prix is secure after the Alpine driver got off with a reprimand for parking his car away from parc ferme at the end of the race.
The top three finishers are told to park their cars in front of specific boards in the pit lane — usually below the podium — but Ocon stayed out on track celebrating his maiden victory and ended up stopping at the pit exit. The Frenchman then ran back up the pit lane while his car was recovered, leading to a stewards’ investigation into him not following the correct post-race procedure.
While the stewards state Ocon was in breach of the race director’s instructions, they felt that he still took care to park his car in a safe place where it could be easily retrieved and handed him his first non-driving reprimand of the season.
“Race Director’s Note for the post-race procedure (Doc. 38) requires drivers who finish the race in the top three positions to return to pit lane and stop at the boards showing their positions located in front of the Race Control tower,” the stewards’ decision read. “Ocon, who finished in 1st place, failed to do so and parked his car on the track near the end of the pit lane.
“During the hearing, Ocon explained that he missed the pit entry and figured that the best place to stop would be close to the pit exit. He apologized and confirmed to be more careful next time. The Stewards do not assess this as a breach of parc ferme regulations. Ocon did not follow the RD’s instructions however and therefore a penalty as stated above is appropriate.”
Sebastian Vettel — who finished second — and fourth-placed Carlos Sainz also received reprimands for pre-race procedure infringements that don’t affect their finishing positions.