Alex Returns to the Podium at the Bahrain Grand Prix
Alex Albon took his second Formula One podium at the Bahrain Grand Prix, taking 3rd position for Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and securing a double-podium finish for the team.
Formula One headed into the final triple-header of the unique 2020 season, starting with the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Alex hit the ground solidly with P7 in FP1, before an accident FP2 curtailed his afternoon's running despite looking strong early on in the proceedings.
His crew worked wonders to get the car repaired for FP3 and Qualifying on Saturday, where Alex was able to match his season's best qualifying performance with P4 - meaning he would start alongside teammate Max Verstappen on the second row of the grid for the Grand Prix.
As the lights went out, all driver's on the on dirty side of the grid struggled to get away - but Alex made the best of it too sneak up the inside of Valterri Bottas' Mercedes and fended off the Renault of Daniel Ricciardo to maintain P4. just behind the Racing Point of Sergio Perez.
The race was then red flagged following a horror crash involved the Haas of Romain Grosjean on the exit of Turn 3.
Despite the huge impact and a fire - the Haas driver emerged from the fiery crash and to the safety of the Medical Crew, much to the relief of all drivers, teams and spectators.
It later emerged that Grosjean had suffered only minor injuries - mainly burns to his hands, which is a true testament to the strength of Formula One cars and a credit to the FIA safety procedures in the sport.
Following over an hour delay for barrier repairs, the race restarted with a full grid restart.
Alex battled with Valterri Bottas throughout the opening exchanges, emerging ahead of the Mercedes after Bottas suffered a puncture and elevated Alex back to P4.
The Thai driver shadowed Perez throughout the race in his challenge for a podium position, but was never quite in striking distance for DRS or in line for an overtake.
This was unitl the final stages of the race, where Perez suffered a Power Unit problem with three laps to go - allowing Alex to take P3 as the Racing Point ended up retiring from the race with the technical issue.
The Safety Car was deployed, securing Alex P3 at the chequered - crossing the line just behind teammate Max Verstappen and giving Aston Martin Red Bull Racing their first double podium finish since the Japanese Grand Prix in 2018.
Alexander Albon (Car 23):
“Of course there’s a bit of luck involved today and Sergio drove a good race but we were there to capitalise on anything happening ahead and that’s exactly what we did so I’m really happy.
The Team told me Sergio might have an engine issue and my first thought was if he’s dropping oil, I don’t want to be the first car behind him so I stayed off-line just in case and fortunately everything worked out.
Considering the car damage we had on Friday, the guys did an amazing job to get everything ready for Saturday and it’s nice to repay them in this way. It’s been a good weekend for me pace wise and I’m happy with how it turned out. I feel like the last few races have been getting better and results just haven’t shown that but we’ve taken another step forward this weekend and I’m pleased.
Next week we’re racing on a different layout but it’s a pretty similar circuit so hopefully we can expect more of the same.
Like everyone in the paddock I was also very relieved to see Romain walk away from the car after the accident, it was shocking to watch back and the safety team did an amazing job today.”
Bahrain will host it's second race in successive weekends on a different track configuration next weekend, for the Sakhir Grand Prix on the 4-6 December.