Haas reportedly in contention to sign 1-time F1 winner to replace Nico Hulkenberg next year 

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Esteban Ocon is rumored to replace Nico Hulkenberg at Haas next season

The one-time Formula 1 race winner Esteban Ocon is set to leave the Alpine F1 team at the end of this season. Rumors have emerged that the French driver is a potential replacement for Nico Hulkenberg at Haas F1.

With Hulkenberg set to join Sauber next year, Haas has been on the lookout for his replacement for a while as reported by F1 pundit Martin Brundle. As the news about Ocon's imminent departure surfaced, Haas team principal Ayao Komatsu reportedly started the contract conversation with the Frenchman.

Esteban Ocon is rumored to be under serious consideration for the second seat at Haas for the 2025 season.

"Esteban Ocon is a 'serious' consideration for #Haas with 'youth' set to take the second seat... leading to a potential #F1 farewell for Kevin Magnussen"

Over the years, Ocon has showcased his raw talent on many occasions. After witnessing his racecraft in his debut year in 2016 with the Manor F1 team, Ocon was offered a seat by Force India. He was given an offer for the 2017 season alongside Sergio Perez.

However, the season was a nightmare for the Silverstone-based team, with Ocon and Perez clashing on multiple occasions.

After spending the 2019 season as a reserve driver for Mercedes-AMG, the French racer joined Renault in 2020 alongside Daniel Riccardo. The same issues from Force India were repeated, with Riccardo and Ocon not getting along. In 2021, Renault was rebranded as Alpine F1. The team was looking to achieve some good results with Fernando Alonso replacing Riccardo. At the Hungarian Grand Prix, both Ocon and Alpine took their maiden win.

At the end of a turbulent 2022 season, Alonso left the French outfit for Aston Martin. The team took in Pierre Gasly to replace the two-time Formula 1 world champion. Now, in the aftermath of the lap 1 tangle between Ocon and Gasly at the Monaco GP, the team finally decided to part ways with the former at the end of the season.

A brief look at Esteban Ocon's 2024 season with Alpine so far

After finishing in the 12th position in the driver's championship last year, Esteban Ocon would have been aiming for a better finish in the 2024 Formula 1 season. However, with one of the heaviest cars on the current grid, it seemed like a daunting challenge.

The #31 driver had a dismal start this year. He finished in 17th place in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix. The string of race finishes outside of points continued in the next four races, with Ocon ending at 13th, 16th, 15th, and 11th in Saudi Arabia, Australia, Japan, and China respectively. While Miami seemed the much-needed breakthrough for the Frenchman (10th position), his bad luck continued in Emilia Romagna (14th position).

However, his worst race so far was at the Principality of Monaco, where Ocon tangled with his teammate Pierre Gasly on lap 1. The contact caused Ocon's A524 race car to go airborne for a moment before landing back hard on the tarmac. This led to a terminal suspension damage, thereby ending his race soon after.

After considering his reputation as a bad team player, team principal Bruno Famin and Alpine F1's management decided to end their relationship with Ocon at the end of the 2024 season.

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