Christian Horner, Alexander Albon

Albon: It was good to shake off the dust

Christian Horner, Alexander Albon

Alexander Albon says he’s back in the “racing mindset” after taking part in a filming day with Red Bull on Thursday.

His first chance to drive a Formula 1 car since February testing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Albon had the RB16 all to himself in a 100km filming session at Silverstone.

“It was good to be back in the car today at Silverstone for our filming day and good to shake off the dust and get back into it,” he said afterwards. “I haven’t been in an F1 car for three months but after five or six laps I was right back into it. All that work in the gym doesn’t really matter until you see it on track.

“It’s a small track, a busy track and it was really hot today. So it’s been a good way to see where I’m at with fitness and I’m happy with it.”

“It was also great to see everyone again. I’ve been in regular contact with the guys on my side of the garage since Melbourne, so things haven’t changed too much and it was easy to get that understanding again.

“It was also good for everyone to get used to the new COVID-19 protocols and it’s been pretty seamless. Overall it was a good opportunity to get back in touch with everything and to get back into that racing mindset.”

The team’s only chance for a practice run before the Austrian Grand Prix kicks-off the 2020 season from July 3-5, team principal Christian Horner echoed his driver’s sentiments, emphasising how important it was “to get ourselves back up to speed”.

“As a trial run this has been great for the Team to enable them to get used to these procedures, which are a little bit foreign, but which are vitally important.

“By the time we get to Austria, these procedures will be the new normal and today ensures that everybody knows what’s expected of them when we get to Austria.”

“Today has been very useful for Alex too, to get himself dialled in again.

“He’s still relatively inexperienced in Formula 1 terms, so to have a day that’s pretty spread out and to do those 100 km, albeit on show car tyres, is something that he’ll be able to take into Austria and benefit from.”

Unfortunately for the team, Albon’s teammate Max Verstappen was not also in attendance, due to difficulties stemming from the UK’s quarantine requirements for international arrivals.