Esteban Ocon hopes to achieve 'big things' with Force India

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Esteban Ocon says he and Force India expect to achieve "big things" together when he joins the team in 2017.

Ahead of the Brazilian Grand Prix, Mercedes junior Ocon was confirmed alongside Sergio Perez for next season after impressing at Manor, where he has been since replacing Rio Haryanto at the Belgian Grand Prix in August. It is the next step in a remarkable rise for the French driver after starting 2016 racing in DTM and signed to Renault as reserve driver.

Ocon, who has previously tested with Force India, is determined to live up to the team's expectations of him.

When asked what had been the main factor for Force India, he said: "I think they believe in me. They think we can achieve great things together and they want a strong driver to replace Nico [Hulkenberg], which is a hard task but I will do my best to replace him in the best way possible."

Ocon dismissed the notion he lacks the experience to be successful at a team renowned for out-performing its limited budget year after year.

"I will do everything I can to just make the best result possible. Everything they ask me, I will do it and even more. I will be there in the factory a lot doing simulator a lot. We already spoke about that and we agreed that without hard work, it won't work. So hard work is needed.

"For experience, I've been driving Formula One cars since 2014 and I've been around the paddock since then. So I feel like I'm prepared enough to have this chance."

After his move to Force India was confirmed, Renault, who had been linked with the Frenchman for several months, announced it had signed Jolyon Palmer.

When asked if Renault had been waiting for his decision, he replied: "There was an option of Renault, there was an option of Force India, it was waiting for what everyone wanted. It came like this, I don't know why it came like this, but it did."

Though his multi-year contract is between Mercedes and Force India, Ocon insists it was the latter who had the final say to sign him.

"Force India gave me the opportunity. Mercedes managed my career, but it's Force India that wanted me. Mercedes doesn't have power over Force India."