Red Bull: Without technical damage, Albon would have been a candidate for the podium

( – Alexander Albon drove 23 laps in the Eifel Grand Prix at the Nürburgring. Then the eleventh Formula 1 race of the season was over for him, prematurely after a technical defect. His Red Bull team boss Christian Horner believes that if the reliability had been right, then Albon would have been a candidate for a podium.

Alexander Albon

The end of the pit lane: Alexander Albon is pushed away by the mechanics



But things turned out differently, already in the first few meters: Albon lost his fifth place to Renault driver Daniel Ricciardo on the opening lap. “And then he had a big brake before Turn 3,” says Horner.

The stationary wheel turned Albons race completely upside down. “We were concerned about that [der Bremsplatten] could even go through the top rubber layer. And we saw there was more and more vibration, beyond our own limit. We therefore had to bring him in for security reasons. “

Collision with AlphaTauri driver Kwjat

Due to his emergency stop to change tires, Albon fell back to last place on lap seven. And a little later he messed with AlphaTauri driver Daniil Kwjat. At the end of the safety car phase, the two Red Bull squad drivers collided.

Albons version: “We had a good restart and Dany got a bit far out of the chicane.” Then the decisive sentence comes up: “[Es war] a bit of a misjudgment on my part. “

Daniil Kwjat, Alexander Albon

Alexander Albon and Daniil Kwjat before the momentous contact for Kwjat



Kwjat also clearly sees Albon’s guilt and says: “I think he was a bit in a fix and clueless what to do with his car. He suddenly pulled in front of my front wing. He misjudged himself quite badly.”

Damage for Kvjat, Aus for Albon

The consequence for Kvjat was a damaged front section and further damage to other parts of the vehicle. The underbody, the brakes, the cooling “and more” were affected, says Kwjat. “That ruined my race. I just ran out of pace afterwards.

But while Kwjat dragged his partially broken car to the finish line in 15th place, Albon stopped in the pits after almost a third of the race. According to Horner, Albon had previously driven “over debris”. “They damaged his cooling circuit.”

“Suddenly the temperatures shot up. And before you lose an engine, you have no choice but to stop the car,” explains Horner. On lap 23, Albon parked his Red Bull RB16 in the pits and got out.

Was Albon’s weekend really “neat”?

“It’s a shame,” says Horner. “Because I think he would still have with Perez and even with the brake and the early stop [dem später drittplatzierten] Ricciardo can keep up. His weekend was decent, so it’s a shame it didn’t end like that. “

Photo gallery: Formula 1 technology: detailed photos at the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix at the Nürburgring

Albon already convinced in qualifying on Saturday. “He almost got into the second row of the grid,” says Horner. “Only a few hundredths of a second were missing.” Indeed: Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc was only 0.012 seconds faster.

Horner also sees the qualifying gap between Albon and Max Verstappen as positive. Albon was “closer to his teammate than in Russia,” said the Formula 1 team boss.

The direct comparison of teammates

He’s also right: In Sochi it was 1.141 seconds, at the Nürburgring just 0.485 seconds – which is roughly the “standard gap” between Albon and Verstappen in qualifying, like that Direct comparison of teammates proven.

Nevertheless, Albon also thinks: “The pace was there.” And he says: “My brake on lap one affected the whole race. What a shame, because the car was fast. Without the problem we could have done something.” In contrast to Horner, Albon does not speak of a possible podium place.

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