Alexander Albon felt a lack of soft tyre running in final F1 practice severely compromised his chances of making it into Q3 in qualifying for the Sakhir Grand Prix.

After being well inside the top ten throughout practice, Albon failed to make it into Q3 for the first time since the British Grand Prix in August.

In final practice, Albon ended the session sixth fastest overall - setting his fastest time on the medium tyre when typically FP3 is used to prepare for qualifying and thus is predominately run on the softs.

Reflecting on qualifying 12th, Albon said: “I’d say mostly we had a balance in FP3 and really we made some balance changes to fix the car going into qualifying. Lacking some soft tyre running in FP3 could have hurt us, because we got what we were intending to do but with the soft tyre you gain a lot of front grip at apex basically and it was just tricky to balance because we were missing some front in some places and having too much front in other places on the soft tyre.

“So it wasn’t as simple as just fine-tuning it with front wing which is normally the case. So that was it really, it felt like I was pretty happy with my Q2 run one lap and that was it really.”

Albon explained Red Bull’s decision not to use a set of soft tyres at the end of FP3 was to give him an extra set for qualifying.

“Just mainly to give us more chances in qualifying,” Albon added. Just to have a smoother run of it. We kind of agreed if we could have a good balance on the hard tyre in the beginning of FP3 we could afford to save a tyre just so we had more tyres available to us for qualifying.

“It worked, the hard run in FP3 wasn’t great but it wasn’t terrible and on theoretical pace it was actually very strong so we decided to use mediums in the second half of it which maybe hurt a bit more.”