Albon pinpoints why he is more comfortable at Williams

Jon Wilde
Alex Albon's Williams ahead of an AlphaTauri. Red Bull Ring July 2022.

Alex Albon's Williams ahead of an AlphaTauri during the Austrian Grand Prix. Red Bull Ring July 2022.

Alex Albon has revealed he found the adaptation to the Williams car this year easier than when getting to grips with the Red Bull.

After a season off the F1 grid having been dropped to a test and reserve driver role by Red Bull, Albon is back fully in the swing of racing with Williams.

He is making a decent fist of it too, having scored all three points the team have collected with what is probably the slowest of the 10 different cars in the pit lane.

All of the Thai racer’s previous Formula 1 experience has been with Toro Rosso and Red Bull, the latter having produced cars in recent years that were notoriously difficult for anyone except Max Verstappen to drive.

And Albon has certainly noticed a difference in how quickly he has become comfortable since switching to the Williams FW44.

Alex Albon drives the upgraded Williams FW44. Austria, July 2022.
Alex Albon drives down the pit lane in the upgraded Williams FW44. Austria, July 2022.

“I’d say the most positive thing I felt is, even though I had a year away, I feel like I’m confident in myself,” Albon told reporters.

“I’m feeling good in the car. I think that’s the first thing which I always talked about being tricky, that you drive certain cars and sometimes one car can feel like it drives you. It’s like you are trying to wrestle it rather than letting the car do its thing.

“Very early on with the Williams, even if it has its styles of driving, I still felt like I could get on top of it. I think I felt confident enough to drive it how I wanted to drive it, and that kind of helps straight away.

“I felt to get into Q2 at the first race weekend, in a car that wasn’t quite there at the time, was a great way to start and it made me feel, I guess, settled in a little bit earlier into the swing of things.”

It represents a contrast, therefore, to those Toro Rosso and Red Bull days. Albon was promoted to Red Bull, swapped with Pierre Gasly, halfway through his maiden F1 campaign in 2019.

“I’d say Toro Rosso I was comfortable with, then already the jump from Toro Rosso to Red Bull I think was already a step,” explained the 26-year-old London-born Thai.

“Then from 2019 to 2020 was another step towards the car that was like ‘wow, okay, different to what I’m used to’.

“This year, yeah, I do feel confident.”