Alex Albon has shared some of the banter going on at Williams, whose team members are starting to regret promising to dye their hair red if they scored points in Miami.
Albon ended two of the three practice sessions in the top 10 ahead of qualifying as he charted 55 laps, but ended up down in P18 at the end of Saturday’s running in a disappointing day for the British side.
However, the Thai-Brit’s race pace was exquisite, and he capitalised on various shenanigans in front him – including crashes for Pierre Gasly, Lando Norris, Mick Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel – to squeeze into the top 10 and claim his second points finish of the year in ninth.
He appeared to beat Fernando Alonso, Yuki Tsunoda and Daniel Ricciardo largely on merit, vindicating a Williams team that started the year slowly in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, and both of the 26-year-old’s top 10 results have come after he dyed his hair red.
Clearly, there were not many in blue that predicted a points finish in Florida, because they told Albon they would go for a similar style if he grabbed points last weekend.
“Before the weekend started, we did say that if I score points this weekend, the whole team are going to dye their hair red,” he said, quoted by Autosport.
“I just went to the engineering room and they’re all starting to backtrack their comments!”
He continued the salon theme during his other media commitments, quipping that upgrading the cars is not the key to success.
“No upgrades are ever needed, you just need to dye your hair and that’s it,” he told Sky Sports.
The late Safety Car caused by Gasly’s crash with Norris brought Albon closer to the top 10, but his progress was overshadowed by the 22-year-old’s dramatic exit from the race as well as Schumacher darting down the inside of Vettel and spinning him round.
“It tends to happen, also Melbourne it was like ‘oh he’s P10!’” he joked.
“To be honest with you we’ve had the pace all weekend, so FP1, FP2, FP3 we were always in the top 10, and then qualifying was the anomaly.
“We were really frustrated to be P18 I believe it was [but] the race happened and we were there.”
Albon affirms that the race pace of the Williams warranted points, and that the result cannot be solely attributed to the incidents ahead of him.
“The race was actually good, we were catching the cars in front of us. We benefitted from the collisions in front but to be honest with you were right there behind the collisions.
“We were catching the cars in front so [I’m] very happy.”
Williams have moved up to three points for the season, but continue to be rooted to the foot of the Constructors’ Standings, just three points adrift of Aston Martin.