Red Bull are reportedly seeking the option of having a first refusal on their former driver Alex Albon.
The Thai-British driver has rebuilt his reputation since being replaced by Sergio Perez at Red Bull in 2021 and has become one of the most wanted drivers on the grid.
His current boss, Williams’ team principal James Vowles, said Albon had a deal with the Grove side until the end of 2025 but Red Bull are reportedly interested in what comes after that.
Red Bull seeking option for an Alex Albon deal
According to a report from Motorsport.com, the Milton Keynes outfit are seeking a ‘first option’ on the 27-year-old’s services. PlanetF1.com has sought to clarify this report but at the time of publication, had not heard back.
What this means is that should Albon be a free agent, Red Bull will have first refusal on any potential deal.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen is contracted until 2028 but his team-mate Sergio Perez’s deal ends in 2024 with a number of names having been linked to that seat.
For Albon, a move back to Red Bull would be a move back to one of the sport’s best teams but the driver is trying to remain focused.
“I would be denying it if I said that there [haven’t] been questions and general chats surrounding around that, but truthfully it’s not really personally my area, that’s more my management. My focus is on driving,” he said.
“Where I stand is, I’m very excited to see how this FW46 develops, I want to see how the car feels in Bahrain and the subsequent four, five, six races and really get a feel for the progression that I hope we’ve made as a team.
“My whole focus is on Williams and that’s where I see myself. The rate of progression to me is also very important, so time will tell.”
As for Vowles, he confirmed Albon has a deal for a further two seasons.
“Alex is signed in Williams until the end of 2025, that’s signed,” he said.
“It’s not something I’ve been very public about because I don’t feel the need to. So any reports that you are seeing… they are speculating at best.
“As I’ve also said publicly, it is our job in Williams to create an environment that deserves someone of the calibre of Alex.
“He is an incredible driver that deserves his place towards the front.
“We put him in difficult positions and he overcame that to score points. He and I have good chats about where we want to move forward… we want to have our journey together in this team for a long time.”