Red Bull’s Alex Albon has given an insight into what to anticipate in the Qatar Grand Prix, as the team aims to fight against Mercedes.
At this weekend’s Qatar Grand Prix, Red Bull’s Alex Albon feels there will be a lot of tyre degradation for drivers to deal with.
The Losail International Circuit in Qatar is the first of three new venues or track layouts that will end the Formula One season in 2021.
Last weekend in Brazil, Red Bull was defeated by Mercedes as Lewis Hamilton raced through the field to win after starting 20th in Sprint Qualifying.
With three races remaining, Hamilton’s triumph has cut Max Verstappen’s lead in the Drivers’ Championship to 14 points.
“We don’t like following in F1 cars at high speed,” Albon said on the F1 Nation podcast.
“The straights are long enough, though, and I think the degradation is going to be high enough, that overtaking is going to happen because of the pace on tyres.
“It will be tricky, but it opens itself up because [of] all the different lines, you can do different lines, not maybe not your ideal line, but you can get away with doing different lines to stay away from the dirt.
“If you watched Lewis in the Sprint race [in Brazil], that was a typical example of a driver looking for the clean lines to stay in clean air and keep the tyres cool, but also able to stay so close.
“It’s kind of a trick. It’s kind of what you need to do in a track like Qatar.”
Hot tracks should favour Red Bull
Mercedes has confessed that they do better in cooler conditions, but Albon believes Red Bull has the opposite characteristics, preferring “hot tracks.”
Despite the fact that the Qatar Grand Prix will take place at night, the temperature is expected to be quite hot. After the sun has fallen, qualifying and the race will take place at 17:00 local time.
“High degradation, we tend to be quite good on hot tracks,” said Albon. “Also, we tend to be a little bit stronger so far on medium- and high-speed corners.
“That leads ourselves to Qatar, but I don’t want to talk too soon, because it’s also quite a high-speed track. So straight-line speed is going to be important.”
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