Red Bull upbeat on progress despite Albon crash in British GP practice

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Both Red Bull drivers touted improvements to the RB16 despite Alex Albon's hefty crash during British Grand Prix practice.

Two weeks ago in Budapest, the Anglo-Austrian surprised everyone by struggling around the high downforce Hungaroring as aerodynamic anomalies with the car were exposed.

Of course, nowadays, Silverstone is much different in terms of setup, with some teams even adopting a medium-to-low downforce approach due to the number of flat-out corners and high-speed stretches.

Even so, as the UK enjoyed its hottest day of the year and third hottest on record, Red Bull appeared much more in contention at least on Friday.

“Yeah I think we’ve definitely made a step as a team,” Albon said.

“The car feels good. We expected worse to be honest coming into Friday but the car was hooked up straight away the first time we drove it in FP1. It’s looking good obviously I’m sure the Mercs are hiding quite a lot so we’ll watch them tomorrow. 

“Otherwise as a car it feels more balanced. Today the weather and wind is much different to what we’ll get tomorrow so it will be a bit of a reset starting then.”

Even so, there was one reminder that the Red Bull is still a difficult beast to tame after the Thai driver suffered a strange crash at Stowe, in which he missed the tyre barriers and made a direct hit with the Armco.

“Yeah, we’ll have to look at it," Albon said. "The rear went quite quickly and I struggled to correct it.

"I thought I had it but then you get the tank slapper as well. We’ll have a look at the data and see.’’

The subsequent red flag to recover his car had an impact on teammate Max Verstappen, who didn't manage a representative low-fuel lap on Friday.

Even so, the Dutchman also struck a positive chord.

"I got blocked on my fast lap and then moved on to race runs, so I don’t have a proper time on the board for FP2 but, in the end, that doesn’t matter on a Friday and it wasn’t a bad day for us," Verstappen commented.

"We keep developing and bringing new parts to the car and they seem like they are working a bit better, so I’m happy with that and the direction.

"There are of course still things that we can improve and on a Friday you don’t know what the others are doing.

"We will keep working but overall the car looked and felt better today.

"On the long runs we also looked quite decent but who knows what the weather will be like for the rest of the weekend and how that will change things!" he added.

"Overall, I would say it was a positive day but we will see where we really are tomorrow."