No lasting effects from FP2 crash for Albon as he eyes Mercedes fight

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Alex Albon was pleased to put his crash on Friday behind him as he secured fourth on the grid at the Bahrain Grand Prix.

The Thai driver required a whole new chassis after smashing the entire right-side of his Red Bull against the barrier at the final corner during Practice 2.

But in a tight battle with the upper midfield teams, Albon would beat Sergio Perez by just 0.048s and hopes to be looking ahead rather than behind on Sunday.

"Truthfully speaking, FP1 was pretty decent, and FP3 was pretty decent, so fourth didn't seem unrealistic," Albon said.

"It felt like something which I was thinking was definitely achievable before qualifying.

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"Of course it was nice to have it, and the car has been feeling good this weekend, especially since today really, it's kind of clicked a bit more. Obviously, P4 is nice.

"Hopefully we can be a thorn in Mercedes' strategy and see what we can do."

Despite the setback of lost track time and having to settle into a newly built car, Albon admits there were no lasting effects on his performance.

"Especially in a team like Red Bull, the quality is really high, and you're not going to get big differences," he said on his feeling in the car.

"At least on my side, nothing. It's more just set-up and feeling, and on top of that, confidence. You want to get on it quickly.

"But truthfully, on the confidence side, I was quite happy with it.

"It was a silly mistake to begin with yesterday, so I knew that I could put it behind me pretty quickly and focus on today."

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Even so, Albon was still six-tenths slower than teammate Max Verstappen, but he put that down to a range of factors.

"I kept having these little snaps just where you don't want it, and I had to drop my minimum speed quite a lot," he explained.

"There was obviously a bit less track time than we would have liked, and just a bit of catch-up with the new car and getting up to speed with it.

"It wasn't bad. Everyone wanted mediums, and then we put softs on the second run of Q2, and I think I did my last time doing a lap on the softs was in Q1.

"So it was quite a long time since we did a run [flying lap] on a new set of tyres."