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Alexander Albon

Pit-stop woes allowed Williams experimentation – Albon

Alex Albon was the only driver to retire from the 2024 F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Albon Imola race
To news overview © XPBimages

Alex Albon was not concerned that his loose tyre would detach from his car following a botched pit-stop during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

The Williams driver was the only retiree from Sunday's race at Imola, coming just a matter of days after he signed a multi-year contract extension

Albon endured a miserable weekend in Imola which started with the driver coming to a halt 20 minutes into first practice, as a result of a mechanical issue.

He did at least recover to salvage a place in Q2, where he secured 14th on the grid. However, his race effectively came to an end on lap 10 after being released from a pit-stop with a loose tyre. 

He pitted again to rectify the issue, dropping him a lap behind the field. In response to this setback, Williams opted to use the race to conduct experiments before Albon retired in the closing stages.

"Yeah, exactly," Albon told select media including RacingNews365, when asked if the race became a test. "We just tried some stuff.

"Trying to figure out some of our braking feelings with the car and just trying to see if there are any solutions on the long run with the car we've got, with the wind and just with the kind of rearwards... just playing around with the brakes, basically.

"It was okay. I don't know if there's much to say really just driving around, experimenting."

Minimal movement

Albon did receive a 10-second time penalty for being released from the pits with a loose tyre. 

He was then investigated a second time by the FIA, for allegedly leaving the pit lane aware that his front right tyre was not on correctly.

This was quickly dropped by the governing body, with Albon having explained after the race that he only became aware of the issue after he had exited the pit lane.

"I didn't feel it coming down the pits," revealed Albon. "But as soon as I took the pit-limiter off, there was like a vibration. And then I could tell something was wrong."

When asked if the car was safe to drive back to the pits, Albon answered: "Yeah, because it was still attached. And I think if I felt it, when I was turning around corners, I can see if the tyre is going to fall off. 

"But it would only go to a point and stop so I could see it was quite safe. It was only about 10 millimetres of movement on the tyre."

Also interesting:

In the latest episode of the RacingNews365.com podcast, Ian Parkes, Samuel Coop and Nick Golding look back at this weekend's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, where Max Verstappen and Lando Norris went head-to-head for the victory around the famous Imola Circuit as McLaren continue to pile the pressure on Red Bull!

Rather watch than listen to the podcast? Click here.

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