Alex Albon hopes forceful Red Bull F1 debut will reduce "questions"

Alex Albon hopes making forceful overtakes in his first Formula 1 race for Red Bull will prevent people asking "too many questions" going into this weekend's Italian Grand Prix

Alex Albon hopes forceful Red Bull F1 debut will reduce "questions"

Albon rose from the back of the grid at the Belgian GP to finish a career-best fifth place finish on his first start since being promoted from Toro Rosso mid-season.

He had a quiet first part of the race but charged through in the second stint, with a fine overtake on Renault's Daniel Ricciardo and a last-lap move on the grass to get ahead of Sergio Perez's Racing Point.

Asked by Autosport how important it was to show a killer instinct straight away in a competitive car, Albon said: "You can tell that you've got a good car under you and your braking points are slightly different than [the other drivers], so you can kind of do those overtakes.

"It's nice to start off by having a good race. That was really a nice way to have my first race and not come into this weekend with too many questions.

"It has been a good race. With more downforce you can race and do them kind of overtakes."

Albon had a grid penalty at Spa after introducing Honda's Spec 4 engine into his pool of available units during Friday practice.

This weekend's qualifying session at Monza will therefore be his first proper effort at full speed with Red Bull, while team-mate Max Verstappen will have a grid penalty for switching to the new engine.

"It's just more role-reversal [than last weekend]," said Albon when asked about the onus being on him and not Verstappen in qualifying.

"Max will definitely still give advice on short-run balance and all that kind of thing, but then come FP2, FP3 we'll start to drift off a little bit and do our own things.

"Possibly on the short-run stuff I'll be a bit more focused on that, but at the end of the day the set-up doesn't change too much.

"You do your little things, but the balance is normally the balance and you carry a quite similar car for the race if you're doing long runs or short runs."

If Albon's qualifying performance reflects what the Red Bull is capable of, he should nail a career-best starting position for Sunday's race as his best grid spot with Toro Rosso was ninth at Silverstone.

Asked by Autosport about the prospect of racing Mercedes and Ferrari drivers into the first corner, Albon said: "It will be different.

"This is maybe not the easiest track for us, but starting near the front we'll hopefully get off the line pretty well and then we'll see.

"I'm excited. It will just be interesting even for qualifying, I already looked around at Spa and saw the slipstream game being quite prominent.

"So I'm sure this weekend is going to be all about that as well."

shares
comments
Ricciardo wants "respect" for drivers after Hamilton Spa crash cheered
Previous article

Ricciardo wants "respect" for drivers after Hamilton Spa crash cheered

Next article

Renault F1 power deficit is history, reckons Daniel Ricciardo

Renault F1 power deficit is history, reckons Daniel Ricciardo
Load comments
How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Plus

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated Plus

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated

Humble yet blisteringly quick, Charles Leclerc is the driver Ferrari sees as its next
 world champion, and a rightful heir to the greats of Ferrari’s past – even though, by the team’s own admission, he’s not the finished article yet. Here's why it is confident that the 24-year-old can be the man to end a drought stretching back to 2008

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2021
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2021
How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits Plus

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells STUART CODLING about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Plus

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at
 Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as BEN ANDERSON discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021