Why Vowles thinks Albon now has “the skills to become world champion” in F1

Williams boss James Vowles believes Alex Albon has demonstrated “the skills to become world champion” in F1.
Alexander Albon (THA) Williams Racing with James Vowles (GBR) Williams Racing Team Principal on the grid. Formula 1 World
Alexander Albon (THA) Williams Racing with James Vowles (GBR) Williams…

Albon’s impressive performances guided Williams to seventh in the constructors’ championship - their highest finish since 2017.

As a result, Albon has reportedly attracted interest from a host of teams, including Ferrari, should they decide to replace Carlos Sainz.

In an interview with German publication AMuS, Vowles highlighted Albon’s notable improvement since leaving Red Bull.

“The Alex you see today is different from the Alex when he was at Red Bull or the Alex at the beginning of the season.

He still lacked faith in himself. He has it now. He is happy, he is a leader, he has self-confidence, he works in a structured way and sets the direction. It all sounds easy," Vowles said. 

"But the simplest is often the hardest. You never know how good a driver is compared to another until you put him in the same car as the other at the same time. If other drivers had to drive a Williams tomorrow, they would probably have a hard time. 

Alex Albon (THA), Williams F1 Team Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 23, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu
Alex Albon (THA), Williams F1 Team Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 23,…

"Today I know from Alex that he gets the maximum out of the car available to him at any time. And every time you put him under pressure, he withstands the pressure. He can cope with a car that is difficult to drive. This experience can be an advantage for him. For me, Alex has the skills to become world champion once. I mean that honestly."

Vowles conceded that Williams exceeded expectations in 2023 with P9 in the championship the aim going into the campaign.

"This is a very different Williams team from what we saw at the end of 2022 and at the beginning of the season,” he added. “When I started, I didn't set a goal in which place we would finish the World Championship. I wanted to get this team back on its feet

"I thought ninth place was realistic, eighth place was a dream. We fought for seventh place because Albon did an incredible job. He defended himself in Montreal, Silverstone and Monza against a whole crowd of drivers who were faster than him.”

"Then we managed to improve the package we have in such a way that we could drive into the points on our own. Two counters here, two there. Nevertheless, we have to stay on the carpet. The top teams score almost as many points on a race weekend as we do throughout the year. That's the bar."

Read More