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Wolff tells Red Bull to release Albon from contract to land Williams seat

Wolff tells Red Bull to release Albon from contract to land Williams seat

Wolff tells Red Bull to release Albon from contract to land Williams seat

Wolff tells Red Bull to release Albon from contract to land Williams seat

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has told Red Bull it will have to release Alex Albon from the contract he holds with the team if they want him to return to F1 with Williams next season.

After driving for Red Bull last year, Albon was dropped in favour of Sergio Perez, although the team retained the Thai-British driver as reserve while also helping him land a seat in DTM this season.

Wolff has made clear, though, he is not prepared for a Red Bull-affiliated driver to compete with a team powered by Mercedes engines.

"It's one thing about the power unit, and with Albon, as I've said, he deserves his seat in Formula 1," said Wolff.

"But it's tricky to have a 100 per cent Red Bull driver on a Mercedes power unit, so I'm happy to work with him as long as they set him free from his Red Bull contract."

De Vries a free agent - Wolff

Nyck de Vries, who won this year's Formula E title with Mercedes, is in direct competition with Albon for the seat at Williams that is due to be vacated by George Russell who is joining Mercedes.

Both Albon and De Vries have also been linked to Alfa Romeo as it is understood the team is unlikely to renew Antonio Giovinazzi's contract.

Wolff has also now stated De Vries is free to try and land himself a drive in F1 despite his links to Mercedes.

"We are supporting Nyck, obviously," said Wolff. "He is in talks with Williams to get the seat there, so there are quite some balls in the air.

"But Nyck is a free agent. He is a Mercedes works driver in Formula E and I will never stand in Nyck's way to drive in Formula 1.

"We have no management contract with him, neither do we have an option of taking him back and therefore Nyck can drive in any team."

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