Christian Horner has refused to blame Alexander Albon for his late crash during first practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix on Friday, with the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing Team Principal putting the blame onto the team for sending both drivers out on slick tyres in damp conditions.
Albon, with cold breaks and on the soft Pirelli tyre compound, lost control at the penultimate turn of the Autódromo José Carlos Pace and went onto the grass. However, after all the rain that fell in Brazil prior to and at the beginning of the session, there was nothing the Thai driver could do but wait for the impact with the barriers.
“I think today you can’t put on Alex’s account,” Horner is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com. “Maybe we were a little bit too optimistic getting out there trying to get him laps in on a track that was still pretty damp in the middle sector.
“And Max [Verstappen] he had a moment at Turn 1 and Turn 2, there were other cars as well running wide. I don’t think today’s [accident], we can blame that on on Alex.
“He’s had a few little incidents this year, thankfully they’ve all been on Fridays and Saturday mornings, and when it’s come to it in qualifying and the race he’s absolutely delivered.”
Horner said the session had began quite well for Red Bull, with Albon ending up fastest, but the crash means the mechanics will have work to do to get the car ready for second practice on Friday afternoon.
“It started good, Alex, first time in Brazil, first time on the track, went fastest on the intermediates,” said Horner. “And then the circuit looked like it was starting to get dry. I think there were 10 cars that went out on slicks.
“Max went off at Turn 2. Alex, unfortunately, with cold brakes, he locked up in the last turn and put a bit of damage. So it’s dented the mechanics lunch break, to get the car ready for the next session.”