Alexander Albon has described his 12-month journey from Formula 2 to landing a Formula 1 drive with Red Bull as “laughable” and “nuts”.

The British-Thai driver has stepped up to the Red Bull senior team for the remaining nine rounds of the 2019 season as replacement for the underperforming Pierre Gasly, who has swapped seats with Albon to return to Toro Rosso.

Albon started off the 2018 F2 season on a race-by-race deal with the DAMS squad but a string of impressive performances helped him seal a full-time drive as he went on to finish third in the standings behind champion George Russell and McLaren’s Lando Norris and ultimately earn his F1 bow at Toro Rosso for this year.

“There’s obviously a lot of excitement, I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a bit of nerves as well,” Albon said in a Red Bull interview ahead of his debut with the team at weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix.

“There’s a big atmosphere here and there’s a lot of people and you can’t ignore it. But at the same time, it’s a chance to prove myself and the opportunity to be at a race-winning team, it’s just exciting.

“Thinking about it now, it’s quite laughable that 12 months ago I was racing race-by-race in Formula 2, December I got the call from Toro Rosso to drive for them and then even that felt crazy to me, so now, coming to drive for Red Bull, it’s nuts.”

Albon said his approach and preparation will remain largely the same and he hopes to harness all the lessons he has already learned from his opening 12 grands prix with Toro Rosso during the first half of the season.

“The way I work is the same but it will kind of be like starting back again in March where it’s a new team and I’ve got to try and find out what the car is like to drive, how the team are and just learn everything,” he explained.

“There’s parts of it which I can take over from my experience with Toro Rosso and there’s some parts which will just be new to me again.

“It’s kind of split, I will be keeping what I’ve learned from the first half of the year but at the same time having to restart the process a little bit.”