The Williams Method 1 group has renewed Alex Albon’s contract on a multi-year deal ranging from 2023.
Albon joined Williams for 2022 whereas nonetheless a part of the Crimson Bull household because the Mercedes-powered group gave him an opportunity to return to the F1 grid.
He had spent 2021 on the sidelines as Crimson Bull’s check and reserve driver, having misplaced his Crimson Bull Racing seat on the finish of the 2020 season.
Albon has thrived at Williams and shortly began to rebuild his popularity in F1.
He has two factors finishes this season regardless of Williams’s lack of competitiveness and has comprehensively outperformed established team-mate Nicholas Latifi.
Crew principal Jost Capito described Albon as “an incredible driver and valued member of Williams” that the squad was “thrilled” to safe for the long run.
“Alex brings an ideal mix of ability and insightful learnings that can assist convey the group better success sooner or later,” Capito added.
“He’s a fierce competitor, has proved a preferred and dependable group member and we’re delighted that he’ll present a steady base for us to proceed to develop on this new F1 automobile period.”
There have been options that Albon may look elsewhere for the 2023 season however with no seat obtainable at both Crimson Bull-owned group, Williams was thought to have first refusal on his companies.
And the group has now confirmed it has organized a longer-term keep for Albon.
This shortly closes the door on the potential of Albon becoming a member of Alpine, the place he had briefly been linked as a attainable back-up possibility ought to Alpine lose its anticipated authorized wrangle with reserve driver Oscar Piastri.
Albon made a comical reference to the Piastri state of affairs in his social media submit concerning the new Williams deal, deploying an adjusted model of the phrasing Piastri had used when vehemently rejecting Alpine’s assertion of a 2023 deal final night time – and instantly earned an approving reply from Piastri himself:
Congrats mate 👏 pic.twitter.com/Y1uJ1IXdQN
— Oscar Piastri (@OscarPiastri) August 3, 2022
The brand new Albon deal is a decisive transfer that forestalls Williams struggling collateral injury in an explosive driver market state of affairs triggered by Fernando Alonso’s shock transfer to Aston Martin.
Williams was the seemingly vacation spot for Piastri, on a mortgage deal, all of the whereas Alpine anticipated Alonso to signal a brand new contract.
Now Alpine wants Piastri’s companies and McLaren is regarded as chasing the reigning
Method 2 champion as properly, ending any likelihood Williams had of touchdown the highly-rated Australian.
Had Albon been tempted away then Williams would have misplaced each members of its first-choice 2022 pairing.
Now it will probably take its time deciding whether or not to accomplice Albon with present driver Latifi or wait to see if its junior driver Logan Sargeant, at the moment in a race-winning rookie Method 2 season, is a extra interesting possibility.
It may additionally flip to an outdoor recruit – like Mercedes’ Method E champion Nyck de Vries, who it fielded in a follow session earlier this 12 months.
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