Alex Albon was disappointing again at the Russian Grand Prix, and Robert Doornbos isn’t sure how much longer the Thai driver can get away with it.
The Red Bull driver looked to have turned a corner when he finally scored his first podium at the Tuscan Grand Prix in Mugello with a P3 finish.
However, he followed it up with one of his worst weekends since joining the team at Sochi.
In qualifying, he could only manage P10 while team-mate Max Verstappen took P2 and went over a second faster.
Things weren’t much better in the race as, after starting in P15, he spent most of the race battling drivers in slower cars and finished in P10 after being passed by the AlphaTauri of Pierre Gasly.
“Two weeks ago he was the hero of the team and he got his first podium and this weekend he was hopeless,” Doornbos, who used to be a test driver for the team and competed in three races, said in his video column for Ziggo Sport.
“When you finish a minute and a half behind your teammate in P10… It would have been a very difficult debrief for Albon, and I am curious about how many times he can still do that.
“It’s probably a very long discussion at Red Bull about who should drive the car in 2021. Pierre Gasly is, of course, waiting on the seat, but it’s a bit crazy to suddenly give him the seat in the middle of the season.”
With Gasly impressing and Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg both available, many feel that Albon will lose his seat for next season.
However, Doornbos still thinks that he can secure his place at the team if he performs to the best of his abilities on race day.
“I think Albon still has time to secure his seat until the end of the season”, he added.
“You can see that Albon has no confidence and has a lot of trouble finding the balance… [but] he has done well in all junior classes and at Toro Rosso, he drove beautiful races,” he added.
“At Red Bull, he can do that on Sunday afternoon. Then, at the end of the race, you see daring overtaking actions such as moves on the outside and that’s what Helmut Marko likes to see.”