Alex Albon revealed his first point for Williams had been “unimaginable” until a radical strategy to run on the hard tyres to the last lap allowed him to secure 10th position in Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix.
Williams has struggled with the new regulations so far but Albon found a sweet spot with the hard compound at Melbourne's Albert Park, using the pace to climb up into the points before taking the mandatory switch to soft tyres at the death.
Albon said: “I don’t know what it is about that tyre but the hard tyre suits us every time we put it on. It was good. We fought hard and it was like qualifying for 30 laps for us.
“Of course, P10 seemed unimaginable to us. When you come into your race strategy meeting it’s P19 and P20 and we had a big chunk of P18 but it worked.”
Albon – slow stop worked out well
When Albon did finally pit, the team had an issue with one of the tyres that could have been a crucial blow to the hopes of points but Albon just managed to stay ahead of Zhou Guanyu to claim the final top-10 spot.
“I think the front left was a little slow, but it almost suited us because I came out right alongside Zhou so he couldn’t get a run on me into turn three so that was a plan,” joked Albon.
“The hard was a bit of an unknown tyre at the time and because we weren’t graining we just left it on all the time and I was just going quicker and quicker as the fuel load was coming off. It was just getting faster.
“It’s almost one of those things, we have to understand why we are good on that tyre compared to the others because at this rate we just need to bring 10 sets of primes into the weekend, just qualify and race and do everything on it!”