By Dan Chapman
Three races in to his Red Bull Racing career and many would agree that Alex Albon has enjoyed a very solid start indeed.
During that trio of races Alex has amassed 26 points (7 more than his experienced teammate Max Verstappen), finished in the top 6 on all three occasions and has made steady gains in terms of his qualifying performance. There is plenty to be happy about for the young British/Thai driver.
It is easy to forget that this time last year there was a scant possibility that the young F1 rookie would be heading towards a future in Formula 1 at all, let alone driving a Grand Prix winning car. However, 1 year on Alex lies 8th in the Formula 1 World Championship standings, and with just 6 races to go until the season finale in Abu Dhabi, there is every possibility that the young rookie could taste some podium champagne before the season is out.
Of Alex’s performances to date, one that will stick in the minds of many was his debut for the prancing Bulls at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium earlier this month. With the team electing to change his engine prior to qualifying, Albon was forced to start the race from a lowly P17 – a position lower than that to which had had become accustomed to whilst driving for sister team Toro Rosso. Having struggled in the opening stint of the race, Alex came alive in the second half of the Grand Prix when the team put the soft tyre on – carving his way through the field to finish P5 by the chequered flag – a hugely impressive performance from the young rookie on his Red Bull debut.
Next weekend the teams and drivers will head to Sochi in Russia for round 16 of the F1 World Championship. That track also holds very fond memories for Alex, as he took victory there last year in the F2 Feature Race helping him to secure 3rd in the F2 Championship . Having stood on the top step in Sochi just 12 months ago, one will have to wait and see if the young British/Thai driver can secure a podium in his maiden F1 season – a feat that has not been achieved by a rookie for over 5 years.
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The spearhead and Senior Partner of Full Contact, Dan is an experienced solicitor and advocate, with a specialist background in employment law and sports.
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