Alexander Albon says AlphaTauri needed low downforce set-up on their car for Yuki Tsunoda to catch him in F1 Bahrain GP.
Having entered the weekend terming that Williams were last on the pace ladder, Albon and Logan Sargeant did well in qualifying in F1 Bahrain GP. The Thai made it in the Q2 and the American just missed out on it in 16th despite lapping the same time as Lando Norris.
Although Albon couldn’t set a representative time in Q2 due to an off moment, he gained few places at the start – which includes one on Tsunoda – to end up in points. The Japanese driver caught the back of him but couldn’t pass even with few laps at hand.
Post-race, Albon reckoned AlphaTauri needed a low downforce set-up to catch him. He went in that direction as he did in 2022. “It’s true, they need to put on a lower downforce car,” he said when speaking to media. “I had a very low downforce set-up.
“Even across the cars, we tried something. It was OK, it made it tricky out there but we had the straight line speed and we knew it was going to be a racy car. We’ve seen it before in a few races last year. I felt like the last 10 laps was every race last year. Nothing new,’ summed up Albon, who now hopes that they can carry on with this.
He notes that are things coming up in the next few races which will help. “I wouldn’t have said that we can score regularly coming into Bahrain but after the race, who knows anymore. We qualified out of position. We should have qualified higher up in my opinion. It would have made our race a lot easier.
“But that’s progress. I don’t want to be overly optimistic, but saying that as well, the flipside, I know we’ve got some stuff for the next couple of races that can really push us forwards,” summed up Albon.
On the other side, AlphaTauri did well in the grand prix than how their Friday went, but Tsunoda rued the lack of straight-line speed which hurt him in catching Albon. He also felt that losing out to him at the start was decisive in the end.
“The race pace was better than we expected, but at the same time, it’s very frustrating to just miss out on points,” said Tsunoda to media. “The start was the decisive moment as I lost some positions to Williams, and their straight-line speed was too strong for us, so we couldn’t manage to overtake them.
“I’m happy with my tyre management, although we struggled more than we thought. As soon as we wanted to push, the tyres began to overheat, and I started to slide around and lose the rear. We have more work to do to develop the car so we can consistently fight the midfield,” summed up Tsunoda.
Here’s how F1 Bahrain GP panned out