Belgium Grand Prix 2022 – Race

Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance: Tyre degradation today was higher than we had anticipated, which meant at least two stops were required. Nicholas’s race was largely determined by the collision with Valtteri [Bottas] early in the race, which required him to pit for a new front wing. His start set of tyres were also damaged and so we chose to complete two further stops using a Soft tyre for the final stint.

Alex had a difficult start and lost places initially before recovering on the opening lap. We chose to pit him relatively early at each stop to give him the best chance of holding track position and using his straight-line speed advantage to defend. We asked a lot of him in the final stint and he was under a lot of pressure from the cars behind for whole of that stint. He drove very well and played his hand without fault to deliver another hard-earned point.

Alex Albon: This was one of the tougher races I’ve done in my career and also one of my personal bests. We did the best job we could today and it’s a good feeling. On the lap to the grid, it was clear that tyre degradation was going to be really high and hotter track temperatures than we have had the rest of the weekend made tyre wear worse. On the final stint I was thinking about three-stopping, but we held on, kept Lance [Stroll] behind and then it was about not making any mistakes. I think, as a whole, we executed the weekend from FP1 onwards well, maximised the positive of our car being quick on the straights, and made no mistakes. We experimented, made the best of the tyres in qualifying and maximised the results potential in the race, so I’m very happy. As a team, we had a complete weekend and that’s what it shows; when you don’t have the fastest car but you do everything right, you can still come away with a point or two.

Nicholas Latifi: I went a little off the line in turn six, there must have been a lot of marbles from the junior categories and I understeered right off. It felt like driving in the wet on slick tyres. I dipped the wheel in the gravel, and it spun the rear around which caught me by surprise quite a bit. I thought I would go straight into the gravel and come back on slowly, but Instead I spun across the track as a result and made contact with Valtteri [Bottas]. My race was compromised from there as that set of tyres we needed to make the two-stop strategy work were damaged. One to forget but we’ll try and bounce back In Zandvoort.

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