Christian Horner says Lewis Hamilton’s comments about Alex Albon are “slightly ironic” given he has “taken out” the Red Bull driver twice when on course for a podium.
After the Belgian Grand Prix, Hamilton said that Max Verstappen was “on his own” at Red Bull in the fight against Mercedes on race weekends.
Alex Albon responded on the eve of the Italian Prix weekend by saying: “I’m not here to make excuses obviously, but at least Spa wasn’t a bad weekend.
“I want more, I’m the hardest person on myself. I know the hard work happens between myself and the team, but it’s just a work in progress.
“I won’t listen to what Lewis has to say, but I know it’s the hard work at the factory and over here that’s going to make the difference.”
One person that will listen to what Hamilton has to say is the Red Bull boss and he found the comments to be “ironic” after his run-ins with Albon on track.
“Well it’s slightly ironic that Lewis [Hamilton] is the guy that has taken Alex out of two podium positions,” Horner told Sky F1.
“Both in Brazil last year and Austria this year.
“Alex is getting stronger, he is improving. The car has been tricky this year, a trickier car than last year but he is getting to grips with it.
“His performance on race days, his race craft, his progress through the field has always been very strong so if we can give him a better car, as I think we did on Saturday in Spa, then I think he will only benefit from that in the remaining races.”
Asked what Red Bull need to do as team to keep Alex Albon on an upward curve, Horner replied: “Well Alex has really impressed me on his ability to brush himself down and bounce back.
“If he has a bad Saturday he comes back and drives well on a Sunday. He has got the mental resilience and he has got that race craft.
“We have seen him perform very well under huge pressure. I think that is a key characteristic and the rest will come for him.
“He works incredibly hard. He has got a very good understanding of what he is doing, what the car is doing and where he needs to improve.”