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Thursday, February 22, 2024

Topping Canadian GP Q2 exhibits Williams F1 progress real

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Albon completed the moist Q1 session in a stable sixth place, and at the beginning of Q2 he was the one driver to be despatched out on slick tyres moderately than intermediates on the drying monitor.

He duly logged a time that nobody else might match even after a mass swap to slicks because the rain restarted.

A scrappy Q3 session left him 10th – previous to gaining a spot from a penalty for Carlos Sainz – however Albon insisted that the Q2 efficiency was nonetheless value celebrating.

“It’s good to consider,” he mentioned when requested about his session. “And firstly, I’ve to say it’s the place we wish to be.

“In some methods, I find it irresistible, as a result of I hope it will probably present the manufacturing facility and everybody within the race group that that is the place we wish to be in a few years.

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“I do know it took a little bit of circumstances to make it occur, but it surely’s simply good to be there and at the least, for me, it exhibits me the place we wish to be.

“It motivates me. To have the ability to get a automotive that is ready to be in P1 exhibits that we’re starting to make steps forwards and that’s simply the drive for this yr and past. We wish some extra P1s.”

Alex Albon, Williams Racing

Picture by: Francois Tremblay

Albon was stunned to seek out that no different vehicles have been on slicks at the beginning of Q1.

“Firstly, we had good tempo,” he mentioned. “In Q1, we have been P6, so we have been feeling good. We didn’t have to take the danger in Q2, however we simply felt it was the precise factor to do.

“We knew it was usually simply slick tyres [conditions], we made the decision. We have been fairly stunned – or at the least, I used to be – seeing everybody roll out on the inters, which sort of made me doubt it slightly bit.

“Behind my head, I had George [Russell] from final yr right here! So on my first push, by means of Flip 1 and Flip 2, I used to be notably sluggish, simply to ensure that I prevented it. Nevertheless it was nice to get by means of and only a little bit of enjoyable to be in P1.”

He admitted that he hadn’t been in a position to carry by means of his good type into Q3 earlier than a crimson flag attributable to a crash for Oscar Piastri and extra rain meant that nobody might enhance their instances.

“It was a difficult one, as a result of the monitor out of the blue turned a lot worse,” he mentioned.

“So the tyres, to get them in a window turned a lot tougher, and it simply felt like we struggled slightly it with that as a result of it felt just like the tyres have been colling down fairly a bit on the straights when the rain picks up.

Alex Albon, Williams FW45, in the pits

Alex Albon, Williams FW45, within the pits

Picture by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

“And that’s usually positive, since you’re doing consecutive operating anyway and also you’re simply getting faster and faster, however clearly, on the second lap, there was a crimson flag.

“I made a mistake – that’s honest – and I’m dissatisfied on that aspect. I simply misplaced a little bit of entrance tyre temp going into the final nook after the lengthy again straight and that was it actually.

“Once I got here spherical and I noticed Oscar pointing backwards, I knew that was it, I knew it was going to be too moist as soon as we went again out once more.

“Blended opinions, combined feelings. I’ve to say although, simply wanting on the complete weekend, this can be a nice consequence.”

Williams has vital upgrades in Canada on Albon’s automotive, and he says that issues are moving into the precise route.

“It exhibits that as a bundle, we’re getting there. We knew this monitor would go well with us greater than Barcelona, however with the improve on the automotive as effectively, honestly talking, it’s truly fairly onerous to really feel as a result of we’re at such a unique circuit to Barcelona.

“It’s so bumpy, the chicanes, it’s all about kerb-riding and really decrease downforce tends to work to your favour – this was all the time going to be a monitor that suited us.

“However simply lap instances, we’re clearly aggressive, so I’m joyful. I really feel we made step. I’m unsure if it’ll carry to Silverstone or Austria, however at the least round right here, I genuinely suppose we’re in place.”

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