Alex Albon confirms Red Bull did not customize their car to suit Verstappen

Alex Albon confirms Red Bull did not customize their car to suit Verstappen

Alex Albon had a challenging 2020 season as Max Verstappen’s teammate but confirmed Red Bull did not customize the car to suit his unique driving style.

Albon was immediately promoted to Red Bull alongside Verstappen in his debut season in Formula 1 replacing Pierre Gasly who found it difficult to keep up with the three-time World Champion.

The Thai-British driver made an early impression alongside the Dutchman. However, he was unable to keep up with him in 2020 and Red Bull chose to bring in Sergio Perez alongside Verstappen and relegate Albon to a reserve role after Sebastian Vettel replaced him at Racing Point, which was later rebranded to Aston Martin.

Albon made his comeback to the grid with Williams in 2022 and he has been performing strongly. Red Bull team boss Christian Horner praised the Thai-British driver last season and believes he will eventually become a star driver.

Despite the fact that Albon struggled to match Verstappen’s driving style, he rejected the idea that Red Bull was deliberately developing their cars to accommodate Verstappen’s unique driving style, in which the Dutchman prefers to drive a car that is naturally stable rather than one that is unstable.

Albon said that Red Bull had been doing everything in their power to try and help him improve during his stint with the team.

“No, quite the opposite actually!” Albon told Motorsport-Total when asked if the specifications of the Red Bull cars were tailored to fit Verstappen’s unique driving style. “Red Bull thought about how they could help me to feel more comfortable in the car.”

He continued by offering an example of other drivers struggling to operate particular cars in order to demonstrate how some drivers find it challenging to get confident behind the wheel.

“Other drivers who have gone through difficult phases in their careers, like Daniel [Ricciardo] at McLaren, found it difficult to feel comfortable in the car, so we tried to make me feel comfortable in the Red Bull,” he said.

“Somehow that never really worked out. With the knowledge I have today, I could have managed that. But it’s easy to talk in hindsight.

“The bottom line is that I feel it’s made me even better and more focussed in this area, that I understand better what feedback I need to provide, that I’ve been through these difficult months and race weekends.”

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