Christian Horner says he was happy to let Alexander Albon join Williams Racing in 2022, with the Team Principal of Red Bull Racing feeling the Anglo-Thai driver has been a ‘hugely valuable asset’ to his team this year.
Albon has been test and reserve driver at Red Bull during 2021 after they opted to replace him in the race seat at the end of 2020 in favour of Sergio Pérez, who has already been confirmed to retain the seat alongside Max Verstappen for 2022.
Red Bull will relinquish their alliance with Albon due to his move to Williams, but they will have options in the future to bring him back into their stable. And Horner is delighted to see him back in Formula 1 for next year.
“We rate Alex very highly and with our line-up for 2022 fixed, our objective was to help find him a seat in another team where he could gain more F1 mileage and experience and we are delighted to have done that with Williams Racing,” said Horner.
“Alex has been a hugely valuable asset in his role as our Test & Reserve Driver this year, helping bring performance from the simulator to the car each weekend, but for his career it was important not to spend another season out of an F1 race seat.
“With his place on the grid next year secured, we are delighted to see him realise this opportunity and we will be following his progress closely.”
“We are extremely excited by our new line-up” – Jost Capito
Jost Capito, the CEO of Williams Racing, says he is excited by the 2022 line-up, with Albon and Nicholas Latifi bringing a ‘great blend’ of both youth and experience in light of George Russell’s departure to the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team.
Capito reckons Albon is one of ‘most exciting young talents in motorsport at the present time, and he comes to Williams next year with two years’ worth of Formula 1 experience, including two podium finishes.
And Capito says Latifi’s consistent performances and continued growth at Williams meant it was logical to keep the Canadian at the team for next season.
“It is fantastic to be able to confirm our driver line-up for 2022 and I am delighted to be welcoming Alex to the team, along with confirming our continued relationship with Nicholas into next year,” said Capito.
“We are extremely excited by our new line-up, with both drivers bringing a great blend of youth and experience that will not only be a great fit for the team but also help us take the next step in our journey.
“Alex is one of the most exciting young talents in motorsport, yet comes with a large amount of F1 experience from his time at Red Bull. His multiple podium finishes highlight his speed as a driver, and we know he will immediately feel at home with the team at Grove.
“Nicholas meanwhile has consistently impressed us over the past three years with his hard work, diligence, and positive attitude. He has continued to develop throughout his time at Williams and has grown into an impressive F1 driver, as seen by his points scoring finishes this season.
“We are now looking forward to continuing to build on our positive momentum as a team and finishing this season as strongly as possible, before turning our attentions to 2022.”