Albon takes maiden pole and victory in DTM

Henry Valantine
Alex Albon holds a first-place trophy at a DTM race. Nurburgring August 2021.

Red Bull reserve driver Alex Albon celebrates winning in DTM for the first time at the Nurburgring. August 2021.

Red Bull reserve driver Alex Albon took victory in Race 2 of DTM at the Nurburgring on Sunday, after taking pole position for the race.

The 25-year-old started P1 and managed to keep himself out of trouble throughout a chaotic race around the Nurburgring, navigating two Safety Car periods, nine retirements and dominating from the start, while driving his AlphaTauri AF Corse Ferrari.

Albon made an excellent getaway, but the first Safety Car was not far behind after Lucas Auer and Maximilian Buhk collided, sending the latter careering towards the pit wall.

After retiring from Race 1 of the weekend, Albon kept his nose clean and led away from the restart and, by the time he had made a pit stop and emerged P9 on the road, a second Safety Car period took place and the eight cars in front had not yet pitted, putting him in a commanding position for the rest of the race.

He kept the chasing Dani Juncadella at arm’s length as he made his way back up the field, and ended up crossing the line five seconds clear of the Spaniard to take a full 25-point haul.

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Albon scored his second podium in DTM at the last round at Zolder, and managed to finish on the top step at the Nurburgring to claim his first victory in any category since winning in Russia in Formula 2 back in 2018.

Red Bull junior Liam Lawson also runs in the German touring car category alongside his Formula 2 duties, and Albon leapt above his Red Bull colleague into fourth place in the overall standings in DTM following his win on Sunday.

Although he was dropped back into a reserve role by Red Bull to be replaced by Sergio Perez this season, Albon’s role in simulator driving has been praised repeatedly by the team this season, with Helmut Marko dubbing him the team’s “greatest asset” when developing the car.

The British-Thai driver himself, though, acknowledged that he can only really afford to have one year away from F1 if he is to realistically return to the grid.

If he is unable to do so, he made a recent trip to Indianapolis and has been holding talks about a potential move to IndyCar next season, if a seat is not made available to him in Formula 1.