Williams Racing introduced some rather suspicious-looking upgrades to Alex Albon’s car at the British Grand Prix, with the new parts striking an incredible resemblance to one of the frontrunning sides.
Just like Aston Martin did at the Spanish Grand Prix, Williams’ new sidepods appear very similar to Albon’s former team Red Bull Racing.
Aston Martin were accused of copying Red Bull in Spain, with the Austrian team later insisting a thorough investigation be completed to find out how the British team designed something so similar.
Despite Red Bull dropping the claim, Aston Martin’s AMR22 has been dubbed the ‘green Red Bull’.
With Williams also now taking an approach similar to the Constructors’ leaders, perhaps Williams will be called the ‘blue Red Bull’ going forwards.
What’s evident is that teams are introducing upgrades to their cars which are similar to the top teams designs, illustrating that Red Bull in particular have designed a car which the paddock believe is the way forward.
Albon discussed this point to reporters, where he explained his hopes for the upgrades.
“If you look at all of the cars, you can see a trend towards certain solutions,” the British-born Thai driver said.
“I think as time goes on, the cars will start to look more and more alike because there are basically two approaches – that of Ferrari and that of Red Bull.
“It will be an interesting weekend,” Albon added prior to the British GP.
“Not only do we have significant improvements for the first time in a long time, we also have the opportunity to directly compare the new parts with the previous solution.”
Qualifying went poorly for the 26-year-old, who was knocked out in Q1.
The conditions were very challenging for the drivers, with the rains intensity varying virtually every minute.
It’s yet to be truly seen how strong the upgrades will be in the dry, with the team believing that they should be at least a second quicker.
“I could live with that,” he laughed. “No, seriously – the stopwatch here at Silverstone will show exactly what the improvements are worth.
“We have to put ourselves in a position where we can regularly be between tenth and 15th on the grid, so that we can then go for the top ten in the races.
“Aston Martin showed how you can improve with an update package so we have to be able to do that too, although they also showed that getting the most out of the new parts can take some time,” Albon added.
Nicholas Latifi; however, doesn’t have the new upgrades just yet.
The Canadian driver is hoping to have them fitted to his car by the French Grand Prix, but is now concerned that his reference point has disappeared.
“Unfortunately, I won’t have the update on my car for probably a few races,” the Canadian admitted. “I expect to have it in France if all goes well.
“The problem is that I’ve now lost the only real reference I have because Alex won’t be driving a car identical to mine. And the fact that we already have the slowest car on the grid doesn’t make it any easier for me,” Latifi added.