“He’s had about four phone calls telling him not to go there”– Red Bull claims that Mercedes is blocking Alex Albon’s move to Williams.
With the recent developments in Alfa Romeo and Williams’ future with their drivers, an opportunity for Alex Albon to return to Formula 1 has opened.
Williams has reportedly shown interest in Albon, but Red Bull’s team principal Christian Horner has revealed that the Brackley based team is trying to block the move.
“We are working really hard to get him a seat; I really hope that Mercedes don’t block his opportunity at Williams,” Horner told Sky F1. “Because of his linkage to Red Bull, that would be a great shame if a driver were to pay the penalty for that.”
“But hopefully, that won’t come to play. Alfa [Romeo] and Williams are the two that are showing a lot of interest, and I think his preference would be Williams.
“But obviously, there are a few hurdles. He’s had about four phone calls telling him not to go there from the team next door [Mercedes]. I told him to ignore them.
“But there are opportunities in a couple of teams, and our priority is to see him racing next year. If we can’t do that, then he’ll still be with us in a test and reserve role because we rate him extremely highly.”
Toto Wolff denies the allegations.
Williams, a customer team to Mercedes, played a pivotal role in developing George Russell, and the Silver Arrows would naturally want to keep the alliance intact to develop other drivers in Mercedes’ programme.
However, Wolff has denied the allegation by claiming that he no way tried to jeopardise Albon’s move to Williams or any other team. He also hinted the opposite by claiming Nyck de Vries deserves the Williams seat.
“I guess at the moment it revolves around Alex Albon who, as Christian says, deserves a seat; he is a really good kid, and he is probably the main protagonist in the… [musical] chairs,” said Wolff.
“I would never block someone like Alex Albon; he’s a fantastic guy, personality is great, I was personally sad to see him going [in 2020], and if he has a chance in a Formula 1 car, I think that’s the right thing to do.
“But equally, maybe Nyck [de Vries] has. So we’ll have to look at the open spaces at Alfa and at Williams and try to find a solution.”