Esteban Ocon has hailed Renault's race pace at the British Grand Prix, stating it was a “nice surprise” to fight cars that the team believed would be quicker.
Ocon crossed the finish line in sixth place, taking his best result of the season, while teammate Daniel Ricciardo was fourth in the sister car.
The Frenchman managed to pass Sebastian Vettel at the start of the race, as the Ferrari driver's struggles continued. Ocon says that it was “quite something” to overtake the four-time world champion, but says there must be an emphasis on improving qualifying pace going forward.
“It really proves that we need to qualify further up to make our lives easier on Sunday. Today we managed to overtake cars that we thought were quick,” Ocon said.
“[A] great job by both sides in Viry and Enstone. It's always a nice surprise. You can be sure that you're going to be that competitive but passing Sebastian was quite something. We were quick today.”
Towards the end of the race, Ocon managed to overtake the Racing Point of Lance Stroll after following him for a large portion of the race.
“The car was awesome, I have to say. Especially on those hard tyres, I was very happy on those. I saw Lance was starting to slow down and I thought my chance is going to come.
“To have a fight and pass the Racing Point, who are quicker than us since the beginning of the year, it's great satisfaction. There's been a lot of work that went through last week.
“We were not happy with how Budapest went, but we've turned that around today. Now I think what we can improve is qualifying again. If we do that, the car is great in the race.”
Ocon has two top-ten finishes to his name so far in 2020 and currently sits 11th in the drivers' championship.