Alex Albon, the talented Williams Formula 1 driver, recently opened up about his experience racing alongside the triple world champion, Max Verstappen, at Red Bull. Albon, who spent one-and-a-half seasons with Verstappen after being promoted from Toro Rosso in 2019, delved into the unique aspects of Verstappen's driving style that set him apart in the Formula 1 world.
Reflecting on his stint at Red Bull, Albon, during an appearance on the High Performance Podcast, hosted by former BBC F1 presenter Jake Humphrey, shared insights about what it was like to be Verstappen's teammate. According to Albon, Verstappen's driving style is quite distinctive and not easily adaptable for every driver. He contrasted his smoother driving style with Verstappen's exceptionally sharp and direct approach.
Albon explained that Verstappen's preference for an aggressively responsive front-end in the car is so pronounced that it can be compared to the highest sensitivity setting on a computer game. This heightened sharpness, he noted, can make the car feel incredibly responsive but also adds to the driver's tension.
Throughout the season, as car developments progress, Albon observed a "snowball" effect. This effect, he described, puts increasing pressure on Verstappen's teammate. With each enhancement making the car sharper, Verstappen's speed would increase, forcing the other driver to take more risks to keep up. This often resulted in a widening performance gap and added strain for Albon.
Albon's reflections provide a candid look at the challenges faced by teammates of a driver as singularly talented as Verstappen. Since their time as teammates, Verstappen has claimed three consecutive F1 world titles, while Albon has successfully rebooted his career with Williams, steering the team to a commendable P7 in the constructors' standings this year.
The insights from Albon on racing with Max Verstappen offer a unique perspective on the inner workings of Formula 1 racing and the intricacies of competing at the highest level. As both drivers continue to carve their paths in Formula 1, their experiences and evolution within the sport remain a fascinating aspect for fans and enthusiasts of Formula 1 racing.