Current teammate to Liam Lawson in the DTM championship and Red Bull reserve driver, Alexander Albon will rejoin the Formula 1 grid after a year off.
After the long awaited announcement of George Russell moving to Mercedes, that meant there would be one or possibly two free seats at Williams.
With Valtteri Bottas heading to Alfa Romeo and Nicholas Latifi keeping his seat at the team, there was still one spot at Williams to fill.
Albon was under speculation by the team principals of Mercedes and Red Bull as to whether there was space for him to return to Fromula 1.
The two team principals were big influences in the Anglo-Thai’s future due to Williams being a customer of Mercedes in the engine department and Albon having the obvious connection with Red Bull.
After applying those speculations the deal was made like this: Albon was forced to cut his Formula 1 ties with Red Bull and their junior programme but, with a possibility to: “retain a relationship with him that includes future options.”
It was said that George Russell was proud to endorse the capabilities of Albon as a driver and a friend, as well as influencing team boss Jost Capita towards the decision of Albon becoming his replacement in the team.
Additionally, Capito was in the good books with both team bosses at Mercedes and Red Bull due to the obvious engine connections in F1 with AMG but interestingly, Jost had strong past connections with Red Bull when they were a big player in the WRC.
Albon was released from Red Bull at the end of 2020 and replaced by Sergio Perez for the 2021 season.
Now that he is back, Alex said:
“When you take a year out of F1 it’s never certain you will make a return so I’m extremely thankful to Red Bull and Williams for believing in me.”
“It is an absolute honour to be joining a team with a rich and legendary history and it’s been very impressive to see how the team has progressed at such a fast pace.”
“Watching on from the sidelines this year has made me more motivated than ever and I cannot wait to get started!”
Alex also congratulated George Russell on his move to Mercedes and Lando Norris expressed his excitement for the 3 Britons to be reunited on the grid once again next year.
In the wake of his year off it will be interesting to see how Albon fares and whether or not the Williams organisation will be competitive with the drastically new regulation changes next season.
Featured image source: f1.com