Alex Albon does not need to ‘throw around laptops’ to grow into team leader

Michelle Foster
Williams driver Alex Albon. February 2023.

Alex Albon poses in Williams' 2023 racing suit ahead of the launch of the FW45.

Told last season he needs to be “more hard” with Williams, Alex Albon doesn’t see a reason to “throw laptops around” to make his point with the team.

Although their points difference was minute, Albon scoring four points in his first season with Williams and Nicholas Latifi bagging two, the team-mates walked away from the championship with contrasting reviews and futures.

Latifi found himself out of a job, the Canadian under pressure for his back-of-the-grid performances, while Albon was widely praised.

In fact the only piece of criticism, and it falls more under the constructive side, was from now-former Williams technical director FX Demaison, who felt the driver “needs to be a bit more hard with the team and push us a bit more”.

It’s a topic the Thai-British racer has previously addressed, saying while he can be “aggressive”, he feels “everything needs to be constructive and in the right way.”

Speaking as Williams unveiled their 2023 colours, he still stands by that.

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“I would say that the way I go about my business is more to get the best out of the people that I work with,” he said, “and I don’t think that’s necessarily always just being hard on people.

“Everyone works differently and it’s about extracting performance in different ways.

“Everyone has different personalities so I’m definitely focused on becoming more of a team leader and looking at ways to do that, but that’s not necessarily just throwing a laptop across the room.”

Albon may not be throwing laptops around but according to the team’s head of vehicle performance Dave Robson he’s also not afraid to speak up.

“He’s not shy about telling us what he thinks,” he said as per GPBlog.

“When he steps out of the car, he’s quite a different character in the way he speaks and sounding much calmer.

“But what he is asking for is still the same.”

Albon will be team leader at Williams this season, the 26-year-old partnering rookie driver Logan Sargeant.

Asked about the role, he said: “I don’t think that it’s like a thing where I’ve got to take responsibility of this and that.

“Naturally, I’m confident in where I feel that we need to go and that was even from the first race of the year last year.

“From my experience with other teams, I felt I could bring a lot to the table.

“So in terms of that side, I have an extra year now, so that’s even more experience under my belt.

“I’m focusing a lot on the areas that I talked about quite a lot last year with the balance of the car in certain places.

“But the main difference from last year to this year is just all that time, the team learning my driving style, me learning the culture and the way that the team do things.

“That has all been done, so we will start Bahrain straight away on the front step and will be able to fast-track our development and our progress through winter testing so that should naturally put us in a better position this year.”