Alexander Albon may have spun on his very first run in the STR14 but since then he has “ticked all the boxes” for Toro Rosso.
Tuesday marked the Thai driver’s first official day in the car and only his second ever Formula 1 run having put in a few laps days prior during a filming day with his new team.
His running on Tuesday morning didn’t get off to the best of starts as he spun the car before beaching it in the gravel.
Since then, though, he’s been flawless according to Toro Rosso’s deputy technical director Jody Egginton.
“He’d not driven a F1 car before,” Egginton explained to Autosport.
“He’s done reasonable amount of simulator work, which you can imagine. We did a big simulator programme with him, and he spent a lot of time with us.
“At the filming day he did a good job getting in, and here he’s been fantastic.
“The off he had on the install was partially engineering induced, it wasn’t directly his fault to be fair. And after that we’ve got into the programme, he’s been great.
“His progress in the places where he was quick initially and not quick enough is exactly as you’d expect.
“But he ticked every box, and some of his long runs, especially on the C2 compound, we thought he did a really good job.”
Albon covered 268 laps during last week’s best with a best time of 1:17.637.
That put him second fastest on the overall timesheet.
“We’re really pleased with him,” added Eggington.
“[He has a] fantastic approach, he’s exceeding my expectations, and I know the engineers are pleased.
“We’re really excited to be working with him. He hadn’t done much running – only a little bit in Misano – before his first time in the car here, but he’s been really good so far.
“We’re really happy and really impressed, and it’s one of the nice things about Toro Rosso, working with the young drivers, and sort of moving them forward.
“He’s on a steep learning curve, but the young drivers’ capacity to learn quickly and move forward is fantastically impressive. So far we’re really happy.”
Albon will return to action this week as testing resumes at the Circuit de Catalunya.