Picture: Fans snuck into pitlane during 2022 Australian Grand Prix

Alex Albon completed an amazing 57 laps on the Hards before making a regulation pit stop ahead of the final lap in Australia.

There were evidently some fans in the pit lane that were not quite expecting Williams’ Alex Albon to come into the pits on the penultimate lap of the race.

A still of Albon’s onboard shows him driving past some members of the pit lane hospitality during the Australian Grand Prix walking past parc ferme when the Thai-Brit drove out of the pits following his stop onto the Softs.

“During Albon’s pit stop, there were some fans already in the pitlane,” said a Reddit user after posting the picture.

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“At least there’s that guy stopping them from stepping on the track,” replied another user, amusingly pointing out a member of the paddock staff endeavouring to keep the fans away from the pit lane itself.

“And he’s got his arms out-stretched which we all know will keep lunatics from running past him,” remarked a third.

Former Formula 1 driver Paul di Resta told the Williams driver that he “almost ran some people over,” to which he replied: “Oh did I? Oh okay, we’ll ignore that” while laughing.

The reason for the late stop is that the 26-year-old completed a mammoth stint on the Hards before eventually pitting onto the Softs and, even despite two Safety Cars, he was able to create a window and secure a point in P10.

“It was good, it was a hard one. We fought hard and it was like qualifying for 30 laps for us,” he told Sky Sports.

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“I don’t know what it is about that tyre, but that Hard tyre suits us every time we put it on, and of course P10 seems unimaginable to us.

“When you come into your race strategy meeting, it’s P19 and P20, and we had a big chunk to P18 but it worked.”

What the Williams lacks in pace, it appears to make for in residual grip, and Albon revealed that the tyres just kept yielding more performance as the race unfolded, despite doing 57 laps on them.

READ: Points finishes ‘unimaginable’ for Williams after Saturday DSQ – Albon

“It was a bit of an unknown tyre at the time, and because we weren’t graining we just left it on for the whole time and I was just going quicker and quicker as the fuel load was coming off,” he explained.

Albon had started the race plum last after being disqualified from qualifying for failing to provide a fuel sample meaning that, for the second time in his career, he has recovered from last on the grid to score points having achieved the same feat at the 2019 Chinese Grand Prix.