New Williams driver Alex Albon lost his car keys on his first day with the team, but enjoyed a productive day in which he got to know everyone at the Grove-based outfit.
After one-and-a-half years at Red Bull, Albon was dropped by the team ahead of the 2021 season and replaced by Sergio Perez.
The Thai-British driver was out-qualified at every grand prix in 2020 by Max Verstappen, and his two podiums in Mugello and Bahrain were sadly not enough to secure him a drive last season.
However, with George Russell departing to join Mercedes, Albon was announced last year as a Williams racer for 2022.
He will partner Canadian Nicholas Latifi this term and has recently headed to the factory in Grove for his opening day of work with the British outfit.
He spent some time on the simulator – ever more important this season due to the new technical regulations – but shortly thereafter lost his car keys.
“I already lost my car keys on the first day, but we did find them which was great,” he said, as quoted by Autosport.
“I thought I left them on the dinner tray so I was about to look into the garbage cans, but fortunately they were just down the side of the sofa in the simulator room.
“So a trip to the garbage was saved,” he joked.
He then acquainted himself with the team members, and was surprised at the size of the operation at Williams.
“Some people see Williams as an intimate team, but it’s still massive,” Albon explained.
“There’s still a lot of people here, from marketing to aero, the machine shop to accounting, it’s a big team.”
He admits that it may take him a while to remember everyone’s name off by heart, but will endeavour to learn them as soon as possible.
“I’ve seen a lot of new faces and I’m not quite sure I’ll remember everyone’s names but it’s been great to meet everyone.
“It’s a very international team and there are a lot of names that I haven’t quite got in my head yet, but that will come!”
Albon, who won a race in DTM last year on his way to a sixth-placed championship finish, got to know the internal workings of his mechanics and engineers.
“Other than that, I got to meet my side of the garage in terms of engineering and through the simulator work. We learnt how we do our business – what makes me click and what makes them click,” he added.
The former Toro Rosso and Red Bull driver believes he can bring some useful experience to Williams, and maintains that he has found a team with which he can communicate well.
“It will be my third year in F1, but I feel like I gained a lot of experience over my time.
“I’m not this rookie coming into it now, I know what I’m doing and what I want.
“It’s great to be able to work with this team who will listen to me, we’ll listen to each other and try and get the most out of this car.”
Albon raced for the Alpha AF Corse team in DTM last year, claiming victory at the Nurburgring.
Nicholas Latifi is to enter his third season in the pinnacle of motorsport alongside him, and the new F1 season will get underway on 20 March in Bahrain.