Thai driver Albon 'hungry for success' after Red Bull hurt
published : 17 Mar 2022 at 20:58
Thai driver Alex Albon said he was hungry for success before his return to Formula One (F1) with Williams after the hurt of being let go by Red Bull at the end of his first full season in 2020.
London-born Albon debuted for Red Bull's sister team Toro Rosso in 2019, graduating to become Max Verstappen's wingman.
But the 25-year-old was demoted to the role of test and reserve driver with Red Bull for 2021, his race seat being taken by Sergio Perez.
"To have the opportunity to be back in F1 you take it, and you take it with open hands," Albon told AFP in an interview before the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday.
Albon had described the pain of being let go by Red Bull after achieving two podiums but insisted he would not be holding any grudges.
"I've had a great experience with Red Bull and I really like the people in the team, there are some really good guys there and of course I still see them and they say hello ... but at the same time it's a new opportunity, a new time to prove, to show myself.
"I say goodbye to Red Bull to some extent. But the focus and the excitement are with Williams and into this year."
Albon had finished third in both the Tuscan Grand Prix and Bahrain in 2020, with his final race for Red Bull a fourth-place finish in Abu Dhabi.
He spent last year exploring other options.
"Of course, you know, last year, nothing was certain," he said.
"I was looking at other options, in other championships to see what I could do. But the hunger was always there.
"Even if you're unsure about it, you have to go for it and see what happens and I spent a lot of last year getting hungrier and hungrier as the season went on to get back into F1.
"It feels good. On my side it feels like an opportunity to prove to myself, but obviously to other people (too), what I can do.
"I have experience with working with Red Bull from 2019 to 2020 and I come into this year feeling like a more complete driver. It's a new chance, an opportunity to do a really good job."