Alexander Albon appears confident ahead of the 2024 F1 season

After Williams unveiled the FW46, their challenger for the 2024 Formula 1 season, in New York City earlier this month the team hosted media members to discuss the upcoming season.

During the discussion Alexander Albon expressed optimism regarding their challenger for the 2024 campaign.

“It’s a complete divergence from the last three or four years that the team’s been designed around,” said Albon in New York City. “I believe we’re still gonna keep most of our good qualities. But hopefully, you know, when we go to tracks like Monaco or Barcelona, we should see a car that’s more in line and not out in Q1 and struggling.”

Now that the team has finished pre-season testing, how does Albon view the FW46?

As a “decent car to go racing with.”

“Firstly, we’ve got a decent car to go racing with. I do think we struggled a little bit with the car across day one and two with just how different it is, struggling to rebalance it, but we made some big headway in making the car more driveable,” said Albon in the team’s post-testing report to the media.

Albon drove the entire final day for Williams on Friday, and finished in P6. That time was also good for the eighth-fastest time over the course of the three days in Bahrain:

However, that lap came on the C4 compound, a soft tire that will not be available at next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix to open the season.

Albon credited a “radical set-up” for the performance on Friday.

“With the changing car characteristics, we shifted some of our historical problems to different areas. Still, we’ve been able to fix some of these but unfortunately in the process, we’ve picked up a few things we didn’t like,” described Albon. “Despite this, we did a bit of a radical set-up today and this worked out for the better. Looking at the rest of the grid, the midfield has closed up a lot with everyone making a big jump from last year, so it’s all quite equal throughout the field. This year is going to be all about the fine details and potential tracks that better suit others, so there are going to be lots of interesting battles.”

Dave Robson, the Williams Head of Vehicle Performance, called the session a “good foundation” to start the season.

“Inevitably at this time of year, there is a lot of scope to push the FW46 harder and to develop it quickly. We have a few days to analyse the data from this week and decide how we build the cars for FP1 and how we look to introduce the first round of car updates,” said Robson. “There is a lot to do but we have made a solid start and have a good foundation to build on.”

Last season Williams managed to grab a point in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix as Albon finished in P10. Teammate Logan Sargeant, in his first F1 start, finished a few spots behind in P12.

Their fans will be hoping that the “radical set-up” the team utilized on Friday opens the door to even more points in the 2024 opener.

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