Rossi takes brutal dig at Sainz – “Ocon is not a lesser driver than Carlos”

Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi has taken a brutal dig at Carlos Sainz, suggesting that he is a lesser driver than Esteban Ocon.

Ocon and Sainz can be considered second drivers at Alpine and Ferrari respectively. With Fernando Alonso and Charles Leclerc occupying the main zones at their teams, Ocon and Sainz being the top dog is not a surefire thing.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Rossi took a brutal dig at Sainz, saying that if it comes to it, he wouldn’t let anyone say Ocon is a lesser driver than him.

“(Ocon is) really good,” Rossi said.

“Signing him is basically taking almost zero risk. He might not be guaranteed world champion material. Who can be dubbed this way? Not many drivers at the moment.

Ocon (pictured) has been rated by Rossi as a great driver. Source: formula1news.co.uk

“I would not let anyone say he is a lesser driver than Carlos or any of the so-called second drivers of the top teams.

“So at the very least I have myself an excellent second driver, and I frankly think he has all it takes to become a top driver.”

Rich man’s problem

Rossi also added that Alonso will stay with the team for next season, and will be part of their new project for 2022. However, he stated that his future at Alpine beyond that was yet to be discussed.

He also talked about how he has a treasury of riches in talented drivers, and how it is a problem to have if they, along with Alonso and Ocon, keep performing at the level they are now.

“It will be a rich man’s problem if at the end of 2022 I have the likes of (Oscar) Piastri (and Guanyu) Zhou knocking at the door, and at the same time Fernando winning race after race,” he concluded.

Read more: Ocon baffled by suspicious differences between Alpine cars – “There has been a deviation”

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