Alex Albon is the “real deal” and deserves another shot at a top Formula 1 race seat, that’s according to former Aston Martin strategy engineer Bernie Collins.
In his five seasons in Formula 1, Albon has gone through the elation of securing a race seat when he thought the Formula 1 door was shut, the excitement but trepidation of being promoted to Red Bull after just 12 races, and the heartache of being demoted to a reserve role after two years on the grid.
Today he’s going through the steps, although it is fair to say in his case leaps, of rebuilding his career with his performances with Williams catching the attention of some of the sport’s top teams.
Is Alex Albon worthy of a top drive?
Linked to a return to Red Bull, although Helmut Marko has since quashed that, Albon has also been mentioned along with Ferrari. For now, though, he’s a Williams driver.
The Thai-British racer has a contract through to the end of next season, potentially even until the end of 2025, but after that, he could find himself once again at a race-winning team.
Sky Sports pundit Simon Lazenby asked if he’s deserving of such a prediction.
Calling the Red Bull family a “bit of a bear” where “you sink or swim very, very quickly”, he asked: “Is he worthy of another shot in a very top drive going forward?”
Former F1 strategist Collins was adamant in her response: “He definitely is. He’s proven at Williams that he’s like leading that team forward and he’s had fantastic results.
“He’s proved that he’s the real deal.”
With Lazenby adding that it “feels to me like he’s grown into a team leader”, former IndyCar driver Danica Patrick weighed in.
“That seems pretty clear,” she said. “He has a lot of maturity for himself. 2019 being his first season, he’s been around for a few years now, and there’s just something that comes with being the lead driver that boosts it even faster.
“He says ‘I don’t like to take things too seriously’, but it comes across very clearly that he’s also just, like we said, a very, very nice guy.”
Not only has Albon scored all 21 of Williams’ points this season, single-handedly putting the team P7 on the log, but he is also 15-0 against his rookie teammate Logan Sargeant in qualifying.
Albon was recently asked about his plans for the future with the driver saying he has the “confidence in myself to keep myself open” for a promotion in the years to come.
He added to Motorsport.com: “There’s a balance really. Being totally honest, I want to see this team and I want to be part of a team that brings this team forward.
“I think the rate of progress that we’re having here at Williams and seeing what’s happening behind the scenes is great. I’m fully committed to the team until my contract pretty much ends.
“But I am also 27. Although I’m not young, I’m also not old. And I do feel like I am in a good part of my career. If you take another year I’m 28, then 29 going onto 30 soon.
“I want to give myself the chance to be able to fight for wins and fight for podiums. And what it comes down to is, at that time and in that time, can we bring this team to be that team?”