MONTMELO, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 28: Alexander Albon of Thailand and Scuderia Toro Rosso prepares to drive in the garage during day three of F1 Winter Testing at Circuit de Catalunya on February 28, 2019 in Montmelo, Spain. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // AP-1YK1KM5DN1W11 // Usage for editorial use only // Please go to for further information. //

Albon: There have been no nasty surprises

Prior to testing beginning at Circuit de Catalunya, Toro Rosso rookie Alex Albon had never driven a Formula 1 car but, despite a red-faced start to his career, he dug in and spent four productive days in the cockpit ahead of his debut at the forthcoming Rolex Australian Grand Prix on 17 March.

The 22-year-old gave a solid account of himself, recovering from a first lap off on his first run in the car last week to rack substantial mileage in the Toro Rosso STR14 and ending his final day in the car second fastest.

Speaking after his final day of testing in Spain, Albon summed up, “I’m quite happy with how winter testing went as I was able to do a lot of laps and maximise my time in the car. Overall, we’re in a good position with the car, and there have been no nasty surprises.

“We managed to have another day cracking the 100-lap mark, so that’s a testament to the team’s hard work and the reliability from Honda.”

“Coming into testing you always want to get the most mileage as possible, and we’ve done that, so it’s been a lot of learning and getting comfortable with the car – something I wouldn’t have been able to do if we weren’t reliable,” he said with 489 laps covered during his four days in the cockpit.

As the drivers and teams prepare for the season-opening race in Melbourne, Albon pointed out there are more tweaks to apply on the car, as Daniil Kvyat takes over the wheel of the new STR14 on Friday.

“There’s still a few things we need to tick off tomorrow before we finish testing,” said Albon. “But it’s been a successful preseason and a great job by the team to get a good baseline for the car so that we could build on it throughout the two weeks.

“It’s still early days, and we won’t know until Melbourne what everyone else has been working on, but I think we can be satisfied with how everything turned out the past four days,” added Albon, who last year emerged as a force in Formula 2.

Albon: It is not easy to impress Dr. Marko!