Esteban Ocon demoted to back of grid for blocking Palmer

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Manor's Esteban Ocon has been demoted to the back of the grid for impeding Jolyon Palmer during qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Ocon was placed under investigation shortly after the conclusion of Q1, where he had finished behind Pascal Wehrlein but ahead of both Sauber drivers. The stewards found Ocon had blocked Palmer at Turn 4 towards the end of Q3, something the Frenchman admits came down to a breakdown in communication with the Manor pit wall.

"The team did not tell me Palmer was coming," Ocon admitted after the session. "I saw him at the last moment and I could not move at that point because it would have been dangerous. I was not aware he was there, so that was clear. The penalty was deserved.

"We were discussing if we could do another lap, so the team was busy checking that and they didn't check that Palmer was coming."

Ocon has also been handed two penalty points on his licence, meaning he now has four for the rolling 12-month period. Gaining 12 points in that 12-month spell results in an automatic one-race ban.